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Monday, January 25, 2010

monsters at the dentist's office

after a couple of weeks of light prepping ("oooh, you get to see the dentist! yay! show me how you open your mouth for the dentist to count your teeth!"), the bean's first dental appointment was this weekend.

when she woke up on saturday morning, the first thing out of her mouth was "kitty-cat waffles? make some?" heh. so i got up and mixed a bowl of batter dutifully, got her situated in her chair, and served 'em up. she spent the first five minutes licking the powdered sugar off the top ("more salt, please!") while i made another batch for the hub, still snoozing in the bedroom. he was quite appreciative when i brought him his breakfast on a tray. i'm such a good wife.

and then it was time. we pulled up here for our 10:00 appointment:

she sat on the counter, looking a little nervous while we checked in and filled out the paperwork.

she relaxed a little when we went to sit down and check out the uber kid-friendly office. it was painted in fun, bright colors with lots of cute decorations. there were plasma screens showing movies and with video games to play and books to read, and the bean made herself at home.

she liked this flower cushion thing, pulling the pieces apart and then putting them together again.

she made her way into the gaming area, checking out the controllers and pretending to play a game while dancing around. such a silly monkey.

and then it was our turn. we were led into the little x-ray room, where she climbed up onto the chair and gave me just enough time to snap a photo before she realized that it wasn't a fun house.

"mommy!" she shouted and flew into my arms as i tossed the camera to the hub. the tech spoke to her in an upbeat tone and tried to convince her that it was just picture time, but she didn't relax that death grip around my neck even after he gave her a sticker.

we tried and tried, but no go. he tried to entice her with the scent of the flavored goo that they use to make the process easier, but even after she sniffed both the grape and bubble gum versions, she was locked onto me for dear life.

"that's okay," the tech said as he led us into the examination room. "we'll just try again later." the chair had another plasma mounted in front of it, and as he flicked through the different movie choices, one caught my eye. "monsters, inc. - can we put that on?" i said, and as the familiar music started playing over the surround sound speakers, she climbed into the chair and got comfy. "sully and mike!" she said happily.

a few minutes later, the dentist joined us and asked us a few questions about the bean's dental routine as she eyed him warily. he was really nice, and she liked him enough to let him poke around in her mouth and check out her teef.

when we first started giving her baby food, i always made really stupid faces as i fed her. it was almost like i was trying to help her eat it - as if making the motions myself would be helpful. and i found myself doing it again as we sat there with the dentist, opening my mouth wide to show her what she was supposed to do. i'm so happy that the hub managed to capture this special moment.

when he'd gotten a good look in there, the dentist pulled out a pretty pink toothbrush and handed it to the bean, who demonstrated her brushing skills without prompting.

after listening to our concerns about one of her teeth that seemed to be shrinking before our very eyes, we trooped back into the x-ray room to get at least one shot for him to examine. i can think of no better caption for this picture than "how many people does it take..."

this time, though, i sat on the chair with the bean on my lap and held her tightly as the dentist and his assistants did their thing. we managed to convince her for a few seconds that the little gizmo covered in plastic and smeared with the grape-flavored goo was a "lollipop," and although she still resisted and wept through the 2.75 nanoseconds it took to take the x-ray, he managed to produce one good shot that showed him what he needed to see.

she was rewarded with a little pink bracelet for her efforts, and sat in my lap in the exam room while she calmed down and we dried her tears.

we got a breakdown of the suggested treatments to fix the issues we were concerned with, and then were sent back out into the waiting area while the office manager handled the fun part - pricing. yikes. while we waited, the assistant came back out and handed the bean a token to use in a machine in the back of the office that contained a plethora of little toys as a reward. she clutched that token while i twirled the machine around and around, checking out her options.

another parting gift - a kiddie dental swag bag.

so, yeah...the final bill for her next appointment features four figures and an anesthesiologist. holy shit. and the office manager was so unbelievably rude and unprofessional. she threw down the sheet that listed the required procedures and prices, pointed at it, and said "so that's what you need, okay? here's what your insurance covers and here's what you have to pay. okay?"

um, no, bitch, that's NOT okay. she couldn't even explain the list to us, rushed through the line-by-line, and actually argued with the hub as he questioned this item and that item. "why, do you not trust us?" she queried. "actually, no, this is our first time here, so we don't trust you," the hub told her. bah! what started out as such a nice, easy visit with a dentist that we liked got totally turned around due to this heifer who was clearly out of her element in the job she was failing to perform.

so now we have to decide what to do - one way or another, the bean needs the work so that we can ensure the health of her teeth now and later, but damn. those four figures are gonna hurt.



  1. WTF? Why does she need an X-ray and so many other procedures?

    I think you're paying extra just for those stupid wall letters.

  2. This is why I don't have kids.


    You can totally remind me I said that in 10 years when I'm crying over not getting a pair of shoes bc my bitchasskid needs braces or something.

  3. I hate the dentist. I dread the day I have to bring a kid to the dentist. Hate.

  4. You know you're paying for their video games and plasma screens? Go somewhere where you pay for the dental work. That's my advice.

  5. i hate that dental stuff always cost so much money, everytime i go to the dentist, they always try to say i need something done, but at the same time they say overall your teeth are healthy. i seriously hate going in for just simple cleaning, that is covered by insurance, but of course they say i need a deep cleaning which is only partially. i really like my dentist office too, but i think that's just the nature of their business.

    i have a pediatric dentist office that i have taken raffy too, if you need another opinion let me know, she is in mahanttan beach, and the staff was really nice.

  6. Yikes. That's really expensive . . . for a kid whose teeth will fall out in about 4 years :( I love that FGD said "bitchasskid." Ha!

  7. My DD had her 1st dental procedure and she had to have gen. anesthesia too. Two extractions and 5 fillings. Aagh. We had to do hers in the hospital due to her heart condition... what an ordeal that was.

    Sorry to hear the Bean has similar troubles. At least she let them take the xrays w/o the gen. anesthesia first, right? Cold comfort, I know. I would get a second opinion. Before we finally got referred to the hospital, we got 3 opinions, but they all refused to treat DD b/c of her heart, lol.

    Good luck! Let me know if you have any questions since we just went through DD's procedure last week.

  8. There are many types of braces. Invisible braces are of less cost. Invisible braces are alternative to the traditional metal braces and have the same function. It minimizes the visibility of braces on the teeth. Invisible braces are recommended for adults.

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