Monkey and I headed to the dentist this morning since her three-month deadline was up. She had managed to wiggle out two of the five baby teeth that were refusing to vacate, and the final three were still stubbornly entrenched.
The tech I had talked with told me that it wouldn’t take long for Dr. Branch to decide if he could quickly take care of the teeth, or if she would need to be referred to someone else.
It didn’t take him long to decide, but Monkey needed a bit more explanation.
She is incredibly strong and has high pain tolerance, but the specter of having three teeth pulled at once is enough to give anyone pause.
The staff at Nashville Smiles is excellent, and Kimber and Dr. Branch were both very patient. Kimber suggested some nitrous to help calm her nerves, and they also use numbing gel before the novacaine is injected, so they really felt they could reassure Monkey that she would not feel any pain. She asked for Buster to come back to tell her what nitrous was like, and he and Yessa were both happy to oblige.
Buster said it was like a warm, fuzzy feeling. He loves the sensation.
Yessa is also a fan, but Monkey still wasn’t convinced.
She did agree to try it, and Kimber gave it to her through the nose cone very, very slowly.
I stayed back in the room with her, and she kept informing me that the nitrous wasn’t doing anything, and that she was totally fine, “WOW! That picture is pretty.”
It was like having a conversation with a puppy who suddenly spots a squirrel.
She handled the whole process like a champ, and I got to watch the whole thing. (Gina, I thought of you and how glad you would be not to be there.)
Once he was sure she was numb, he took a squeaky-clean pair of stainless steel pliers and grabbed hold of each tooth, one by one. Since he couldn’t know how long the roots were, and since bumping other teeth or her tongue could have been painful, he worked very slowly and methodically, and then “pop,” they were out. Luckily, all of them had dissolved roots. The gums had hardened, which was all that was holding them in.
She was hungry, and a little cranky. (I told her I think nitrous makes her mean, unlike her siblings. ;-)) Once we got some food in her, she was back to her normal, wonderful self, just a few ounces lighter.
I sent this picture to Buds after the procedure, with the subject line: Problem Solved.
And got this email back from him:
I spent an unfortunate amount of time staring at that picture going “What was the problem?” “Are those peach halves?” “Did we have a problem with peach halves?” before it hit me.
Gaaah, I’m never going to work at a hospital.
Big smiles from all of us.