I took my granddaughter to the dentist yesterday. I couldn’t help but think about Bill Cosby’s routine on dentist visits. I wonder if they were concerned that I was chuckling in the exam room. I was discussing with the hygienist whether or not parents should be allowed in the room during an exam. We agreed that it depends on the parent. If you are afraid of the dentist, your kids will be afraid of the dentist.
When I was a kid, our dentist did not use any anesthetic. You prayed that you did not have a cavity and feared the drill. He had a lovely assistant named Bev. She reminded me of 60’s television moms. She was so sweet, and it made me wonder how she could send us in for torture with that beautiful smile. Our dentist had a hobby. He painted clay figurines of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. You might get one if you had a good checkup. Bev would take you into the exam room and you would sit in the chair and pray. You would hear Dr. Doom tell you that you had a cavity and start to tremble and cry a little. To this day, I give the old white knuckle grip to the dentist’s exam chair!
Somehow I had to get my kids in without scaring them. I think all of my fear flowed into “Mommy”. She is a white knuckler too. But our family dentist was always very good with the kids, not like Dr. Doom. I have always been happy that for the most part, the kids have had good experiences. “Calvin” ended up with some cavities as a youngster. We found out after the fact that he had candy hidden in his sock drawer. He also had the top bunk and could easily open the drawer and reach in for a few pieces after he went to bed. The girls all had big beautiful teeth and small mouths (which I would dispute, especially when they were teens). “The Surprise” discovered the financial benefits of the Tooth Fairy and pulled out seven teeth prematurely for the money which resulted in long term orthodontics.
As young adults they have developed new complaints as they have had their wisdom teeth removed.
“Pook” had the worst experience, returning three times to surgery until everything was right. I still maintain it was because he was sooooo mean to me before the procedure. (Sometimes Mom curses do work!) “The Surprise” is still waiting for his turn.
All in all, just remember, Dentists have feelings too! Do not teach your kids to hate and/or fear them! It will only serve to make life more difficult for you, your child, and your dentist! Smile (thanks to your Dentist) and have a nice day!
Wife, Mother, Mother, Mother, Mother, Mother, Mother, Mother, Nurse, Grandmother, Friend...that's me in a nutshell!