Avery had his FIRST dentist appointment today, and he was a model patient!
After we moved to VT, among the paperwork involved in moving, I setup Avery’s doctor and dentist. He’s almost 3, so he was due for his first dentist appointment. As a parent, I was worried Avery would be scared and the receptionist on the phone warned me that it may take two visits to accomplish the cleaning because kids are antsy and scared. So, I got all my ducks in a row, planned for the best, but prepared for the worst.
Avery has been brushing his teeth since he was able to, first just at night, and more recently in the morning too. I don’t let him have juice during the week, and he is limited on sweets for just treats and deserts. So, I was confident that his teeth would look good – I was just worried about how he would react to all the poking and proding and having to sit in a chair for a long period of time.
The day before and morning of, I told Avery about the dentist and talked it up, telling him how he’s going to show the dentist his big teeth and overall just making it sound like a fun experience. No parent wants their kid to be scared of the dentist and seeing as even as adults we dread going, it was a strong possibility.
So, they fit us in at 10am this morning, which meant I was up at 6am working in the office getting in some early hours so I could take a long break to take Avery to the dentist. It didn’t make sense to bring Avery to school, and pick him up an hour later to bring him to the appointment, so after Avery got up and had breakfast, he hunkered down in the office with me while I worked for an hour more before the appointment.
We got to the dentist’s office early, so we mozied in, watching the horse and cat in the field next door. Avery found out later the cat’s name is Mike and he visits the dentists during the day although he lives next door.
I filled out a form while Avery watched the fish, read a book, and he started to get antsy so he watched a couple minutes of Thomas the Train before we got called in. Avery kept asking where the doctor was, and I explained how they would come out and call his name and we would go in.
The hygienist came out and Avery followed her in and sat himself up on the dentist chair, all by himself. He was all smiles and looking around checking everything out. The hygienist was so nice – she explained all the tools, the moving chair, the light, her mask and glasses. Avery sat quietly, watching her intently with her eyes. He got a purple bib and was ready to be checked out!
I stood up in the corner of the room so Avery could see me. The hygenist asked Avery to open his mouth… and nothing. (Mommy panic…. quick think of something!) So, I opened my mouth, showing Avery what to do (We mimic eachother and practice making different emotion faces, so it was worth a try). And it worked – Avery opened his mouth. The hygenist counted his teeth – she had a pointy tool which Avery gave a worried look to, so to distract him I held up my fingers for him to see as she counted his teeth. I almost ran out of fingers too… 10 teeth on the bottom, and 10 on top!
She said he didn’t have any cavities, his teeth looked very clean, and he has good spacing for the big teeth to grow in when they come. He has one decay spot on a tooth but she said the tooth was formed like that, probably from medication when he was really little (He had thrush and pneumonia when he was little, so maybe that). Next, she cleaned his teeth. She asked Avery to pick a flavor of tooth paste… cherry, bubble gum, grape….no response. So, I put it in Avery terms… “would you like red, pink, or purple tooth paste?” He picked purple and did great with the automatic brushing thing and the water and suction things too. She even flossed his teeth, which she says we don’t have to do just yet, but sometimes we can try it to get him used to it. Avery and I gave eachother thumbs up thru the whole thing – he was such a trooper!
The dentist came in after the cleaning and confirmed the same thing the hygienist had said, and after he left, Avery says “All done?” with a smile. He pointed to his ears and said “My ears now?!’ and we all laughed and I explained that they check just teeth at the dentist and the doctor will check his ears when we go see his doctor.
He picked out a toy and a new toothbrush – Lightning McQueen… which is awesome because we have a Mater one that Avery keeps asking where Lighting is, now we have him too! Avery was one proud kiddo walking out with his bag of goodies waving bye to everyone.
Avery is setup for another appointment in 6 months. Until then, we’re told to just continue what we are doing. As a Mom it was a big relief knowing I’ve taught him to brush his teeth well and not fed him too many treats, and he was such a model patient that just made me all warm and fuzzy inside, especially when he kept getting praised for how well he did.
One proud Momma today 😉
And I won’t spare the less glorious portion of the day when Avery threw a fit in the car just before we got to daycare because he wanted to go home and I had to leave him crying and the teacher practically had to pry him off me because he wouldn’t let go. But I had Joey check on him 10 minutes later and he was settled in for his nap and doing just fine. He’ll have a fun afternoon with his friends. Overall, a success! Next stop is Avery’s 3 year checkup with the doctor in a month.