Monday, November 03, 2014

NaBloPoMo Day 3: The Dentist

Vance recently chipped a tooth. He has also been playing rugby at recess. I believe these two events are related, as are the mysterious bruises that have been appearing as well. He did not connect the dots, I helped him out. 

Fast forward to the dentist's office a week later for his regularly scheduled cleaning. Even though the chip is very small and not noticeable I thought it was worth mentioning because I value good hygiene. The dentist proceeded to tell me that there's no enamel damage and it will most likely chip off again even if he fixes it because of where and how small it is, however he suggests fixing it before braces but it's up to us. What I heard was "no damage", "hardly noticeable", "will break again", and "I want some of your money before you go and give it all to an ortho". My mind was made up. No new taxes tooth. It did get a bit awkward as my usually quiet and indecisive son spoke up and announced that he'd like to go ahead and have the tooth fixed. I felt like a deadbeat parent but assured the dentist that we'd revisit The Chip before braces and gave Vance The Stink Eye. 

No matter if I'm in the chair or the kids, the hygienist always asks if a manual toothbrush is used. Manual? Aren't all toothbrushes manual? It makes me laugh because I picture a Jetson-esque robot that comes up and proceeds to brush my teeth for me while my arms stay still in my lap. (I know what she means. That's just how my brain works.)   

It's taken me forever to get to the point of this whole post. I have been thinking about buying a Sonicare toothbrush for Vance. He tends to be a "lazy" tooth brusher and the dentist suggested it might help. I'm hesitant because the root of the problem is Vance being a lazy brusher. Won't he be just as lazy with an expensive toothbrush too? Or are these "automatic" toothbrushes really magic?
Tell me. Anyone have a kid that uses one? I'd love to know what you think!

5 Responses to “NaBloPoMo Day 3: The Dentist”

  1. Anonymous7:52 PM

    I love to able to laugh when I'm by myself! I can laugh and snort as loud as I want and that's just what I did tonight when I read your blog! Sis your so funny. ❤️Mom

  2. Anonymous11:32 AM

    You could probably make millions if you could figure out how to get that robot to find the kid and make him stand still long enough to get the teeth brushed!

    No, judging by my childhood (and all my siblings) as well as my son, kids are bad about brushing their teeth. And unless the brush you buy him jumps up and brushes his teeth while he is playing video games, it will just be an expensive "manual" toothbrush.

    It just isn't fun or something that they see has immediate consequences, so the only way it will get done is standing over them while they do it.

    Once my son has to pay for his dental bills, it will become more important. Or if he is in danger of loosing a front tooth or something a 'girl' might notice. Till then, its complete diligence.

  3. Dana Manternach12:24 PM

    I know for sure I have 2 lazy brushers (boys!!) ... I too wrestle with this question. I am hoping you have a solution, we have the battery op ones that are "ok" but I think they too make them lazy by just moving the brush around without providing any force to CLEAN the teeth. :-)

  4. I've been told that the Sonicare (and others alike) are good because the spinning bristles do a better job as they move it around their mouth. Also, and this is the big one for me, the brushing cycle is timed so it turns off when it's done, meaning they're brushing for the correct length of time.

    Part of me thinks spending this much is silly and that they should learn to brush the right way. But the other side is annoyed and tired of sending them back upstairs to brush again.

    Thanks for commenting ladies!

  5. Hello...I can't speak about having kids but I can address using a Sonicare. I was told by my dentist no one should brush their teeth with force as it's bad for the gums. I also found a study on the National Institutes of Health website that corroborated what my dentist said.

    You wrote about thinking your kids should learn to brush "the right way." For me, it's not a question of right and wrong. I think it's about old and new technology. A motorized toothbrush is just better at doing the job than the majority of users of non-motorized toothbrushes because of how a motorized toothbrush oscillates and is also able to push water between teeth to clean.

    - As you mentioned, a great feature about a power toothbrush is the timer. Because it's set for two minutes, it makes sure the teeth are being brushed for the recommended amount of time.
    - Better dental checkups.
    - Better dental checkups.
    - Better dental checkups.

    - It's yet one more item you need to remember to let the battery drain nearly completely out once in awhile, in order to make the battery last longer.
    - The charging stand is yet another thing to clean as it gets dusty and, depending upon the user(s), the stand, the toothbrush handle and the lower part of the brush head can become encrusted with dried toothpaste.

    To correctly use a power toothbrush, think of your teeth as being divided into quadrants: lower left, lower right, upper left, upper right. Pick a quadrant and place the toothbrush at the furthest end of the quadrant. For example, place the toothbrush on the outside of the lower right quadrant, at the back of your mouth where your teeth start. Press the vibrating toothbrush gently to the line where teeth meet gum and give yourself 15 seconds to move the toothbrush along the gum line from the back to the center of your lower teeth. Move the toothbrush to the inside of your teeth (the side closer to the tongue) along the gum line and give yourself 15 seconds to move the toothbrush from the center of the teeth to the back of the same quadrant. Don't forget to brush the back of the last tooth on each quadrant.

    The toothbrush pauses a moment every 30 seconds. That's your cue to move the toothbrush to the next quadrant. With practice, you'll find the toothbrush reaches that small pause in action as you're finishing the back of the tooth on a quadrant.

    The toothbrush turns itself off after two minutes. If you haven't finished brushing your teeth by then, you can turn the brush on again but it does start another two-minute course of 30 seconds between pauses so you have to punt at that point.

    - Turn the toothbrush on after you've put it in your mouth. It's not much fun to turn on a toothbrush that's has toothpaste on it outside of your mouth. At least it's not fun for the person who has to clean the results.
    - When it's time to buy replacement brush heads, it can be frustrating finding the correct placement heads for your brand and model toothbrush. I suggest stocking up on brush heads when you buy the kit.
    - Because a lot of bacteria is carried on the tongue, use the brush itself to clean your tongue. However, always brush your tongue last so you don't bring the bacteria from the tongue to your gum line.
    - When traveling for more than a few days, be sure to pack the charging stand. The toothbrushes can hold a charge for, I think, two to three days.
    - I turn my toothbrush back on briefly when I run it under the water to rinse it after use. I feel that gets the bristles cleaner.
    - Be patient both in learning how to time 15 seconds for the inside and outside of each quadrant, and in learning how to hold the brush to get the best angle for the gum line because it can be a little frustrating at first.

    I think buying a Sonicare was well worth the expense and small learning curve. It also gave me peace of mind to know I was brushing my teeth the “right” way. Hope this helped!



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