I nervously asked all the Moms at the playdate: Where do you take your kids to the dentist?
There was awkward stammering and ums and wells.
And let’s admit it. Many of us a) don’t have a family dentist b) have a dentist but don’t take our kids regularly or c) don’t know where to start and d) feel crazy guilty about it, so we put it off even longer.
For us, we had an insurance switcharoo and I REALLY liked our old dentist and was (crazy) thinking we would just pay the out of network costs. Then I tried one in our network and he couldn’t treat Gray (he has teeth issues) and I didn’t like who he referred us to (never went in, just didn’t like the receptionist’s tone) or the second person he referred us to (didn’t see him either but heard bad things) and I started to just get really down about it.
I don’t like going to the dentist. I wait until I have a horrible toothache and am in writhing in pain and then I’ll go. I also have major trust issues with doctors treating my kids. It’s like, panic-inducing, nervous shakes, sweating, nauseating -the works- when searching for someone I think will “get” me.
So, at the playdate. It was like a huge relief to hear other Moms tell the truth about the dentist.
Afterward, I drove home and checked the mail. There was a postcard to a new family dentistry right near my house. A sign?
I called them. They took our insurance. And I made an appointment to take Gray in that very hour.
I told them what the other Moms said. The dentist (who I LIKE A LOT) and hygienists (I like them a lot, too) understood, and insisted we don’t judge. We don’t do lectures. Everyone always thinks they are the worst we’ve ever seen.
This is my encouragement to you, Moms and Dads. Make the appointment before their first painful toothache happens. Take them in! If you have a good dentist, let your friends know. Talk about this stuff because all along I’ve thought I am the only one floating around parenthood doing it all wrong. It’s so much better to know we’re all doing it wrong together.
He’s not crying, he was just putting his hands on his face because he didn’t want his picture taken. But he did cry later, believe me. They had to put us in a padded room. But it was all good. Eventually.
If you live in the area, I highly recommend our new dentist, Dr. Williams at Silhavy Creek Family Dental. I was not paid to say any of this! I am just very thankful to their patience with Gray (and me!)