July 09, 2004

Kate's First Dentist Visit

Kate had her first visit to the dentist today. In addition to doing a general examination of Kate's teeth, mouth and gums, Dr. Jay (Hirsch) also gave us his expert opinion on some discoloration on Kate's two bottom teeth. A week or two ago I noticed that Kate's two, new bottom teeth were turning blue. Earlier this week we had a quickie visit at the pediatrician's office to find out why this happened. To our overwhelming dismay the pediatrician told us it was decay. Can you only imagine the thoughts and questions that went through our minds? How could this happen to teeth that still hadn't fully erupted and were only about 2 month's old? Worst of all, how could *WE* let this happen to Kate's teeth? What horrible parents we are!

Of course we immediately scheduled a pediatric dental appointment to get a second opinion and/or to get more information on how to reverse this problem and prevent it from happening again. Luckily, Dr. Jay completely relieved our fears. Apparently the "staining" is not decay at all. I doubt I'm going to communicate this correctly but...when Kate's teeth erupted a thin skin layer stayed on her teeth and was stained by the sugars in the breastmilk, juice and foods she's consumed so far. This layer cannot be eaily removed by regular ol' infant teeth brushing but could be removed by the dentist. He said it would probably come off as soon as Kate started to eat crunchier solids, like Zweiback Toast. Since he indicated that it was not harmful to Kate or her teeth we decided to just leave it and let nature take its course. It was already past Kate's naptime and we didn't want to add to the trauma of the day.

Speaking of Kate...she held up pretty well during her first dental visit. She enjoyed meeting all of the new people in the office, as well as all of the children in the lobby. When Dr. Jay first started to examine her teeth she was absolutely wonderful...not a peep. But after a few minutes of having the bright lights beaming in her face, her jaw forcibly opened and instruments poking around in her mouth it started to get her upset. Understandably the doctor was happy when she started to cry. Her mouth opened as wide as it possibly could.

The visit was a big relief for both me a Ken and quite a milestone for Kate. Of course all of the excitement completely wore her out. She was asleep in a matter of minutes of getting buckled into her carseat. And why not? She had just escaped a dental decay scare by the skin of her teeth. ;-)
Posted by Jean-Marie at July 9, 2004 08:57 PM
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Glad it all worked out in the end and it wasn't tooth decay. Whew! :) Posted by: Cat at July 12, 2004 11:18 PM
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