However, that’s not to say she hasn’t been back to hospital. Having chipped her teeth as a toddler by falling on tiles whilst crawling (and being chased by a tickling daddy also on all fours), the combination of the sharp edges and her overbite meant that action needed to be taken, and as such it was finally off to the dentist for Chantelle and Jessica.
The decision was made to fix the teeth regardless of them being milk teeth, and as such, November 2014 saw Chantelle escorting Jessica to the Mediclinic Strand Hospital for the dental procedure to happen under anesthetic.
(Booked in at the hospital for medical aid purposes.)
The dental procedure was a success, Jessica seemed to rather enjoy her hospital trip, and at last the teeth were back to being as good as new.
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Sadly though, that didn’t last very long, and after a couple more rounds of fix, chip, fix, chip, we’ve pretty much decided to wait and let the tooth fairy take charge on this one…
As a baby, Jessica chipped her two front teeth pretty badly by crashing teeth first into the tile floor at Monty and Cheryl’s place whilst being chased around on all fours by her daddy (i.e. me). Then earlier last year the dentist spotted a cavity, and in November last year we finally got Jessica to the dentist to have the hole plugged and her front teeth fixed (mainly because of the damage it was causing her bottom lip when biting down – sadly, she’s inherited my overbite it would seem).
The procedure was a success (expensive though, so, so expensive), and for the last four months Jessica has been running around with perfect teeth and a healthy bottom lip.
Until Friday that was.
Picking her up from school at the end of the work day, Chantelle arrived to the bad news that following a successful nap time, Jessica stood up too quickly, lost her balance and fell face first to the ground, chipping out both her front teeth in the process.
Needless to say, both Chantelle and I want to cry.
(We’ll have to make a plan though. I don’t necessarily want to have them fixed so shortly before she starts losing her milk teeth, but at the same time I can’t have her damaging her bottom lip again. Sigh, guess it is time for Mr Credit Card to once again make an appearance…)
It’s actually hardly visible when I smile at you straight on. However, if you’re facing my left hand side profile and I open my mouth, then it hits you pretty hard, not to mention when I open up wide to give a damn good laugh! It is going to take some getting used to visually, but this missing tooth is definitely not the most attractive of things ever done to me.
The extraction actually went pretty smoothly. Having completed my five days of antibiotics (damn did those make my asshole burn and make me fear going to the toilet, possibly the very first time that the white porcelain throne actually scared me so! Sorry, TMI I guess.), I made my way through to dentist Aletia Kruger’s premises out here in Strand, where I was first diverted to the oral hygienist Adri who spent the next half and hour or so cleaning my teeth and getting rid of years worth of plaque in the process. As it turned out, she identified that I definitely had the first stages of gum disease, so it was just as well I saw her, because all the cleaning should sort that out.
With my teeth now feeling strangely polished and giving off strange nook and cranny sensations to my tongue, I strolled down the corridor to Dr. Aletia, where she sat me down, had a look, numbed the upper gum and then injected me from what must be the largest, meanest looking metallic injection needle that I have ever seen!
Unfortunately the problem abscess had not drained completely as she had hoped that it might, but it had gone down enough to make the extraction feasible. With my mouth now properly dead, she grabbed her specialized tongs and worked the broken tooth out, with a lot less effort than I thought it would take.
I was given instructions and some gauze to bite down on for the next hour, paid my bill and then left, one tooth lighter.
It was an uncomfortable hour (which I timed to make sure I didn’t a) cheat and b) didn’t keep that gauze in for a minute longer that I had to!), but eventually I could open my mouth again and inspect the damage. Like I said, it is going to take a while to get accustomed to this new look! :)
Funny thing is though, I’m not sure everything has gone as it was meant to. I was told to expect a lot of pain from the wound in the evening once the anesthetic wore off, so much so that right up front, the Dr. had written out a prescription for pain meds with the antibiotics. However, as of this morning, still nothing whatsoever, which worries me just a little bit. Maybe the abscess is blocking the nerves are something, but I’m pretty sure it isn’t meant to be this easy.
Final point, it is pretty off-putting to Chantelle (who I flash it to constantly) while Jessica things it’s pretty funny. Or that maybe that’s just gas.
On Wednesday I’m going to lose a tooth. I doubt this will make me look any more attractive.
The root of it all (see what I just did there?) was a couple of years back when Ryan and myself found ourselves playing the fool on the trailer whilst moving Gran into the old age home. Needless to say, two grown men wrestling always ends in tears, and a “catch me while I jump on your back” move that went horribly wrong, resulted in a trip to the hospital for me (for stitches if I remember correctly), as well as a sliver of tooth that broke out when my head decided to meet the wall.
The tooth effected was the maxillary first premolar on the left hand side of my upper jaw, and being the person I am, I just forgot about it (read ignored) and went on with life. As the time went by (read years), bit by bit the missing part became bigger as more and more slivers gave way, followed by the eventual onset of some pain when the nerve at last became somewhat exposed during the middle part of this year. A month or two ago the pain then all but disappeared, and in its stead left behind a spongy, inflamed and painful gum around the root – basically the trigger that started the knocking at the back of my head to finally go see a dentist and get something done about my long neglected tooth.
(Also, the horror stories that came out of the office after I made the misguided mistake of mentioning my toothy problem further helped to turn this gentle knocking into a frantic SMS for Chantelle to find me a dentist and make an appointment ASAP!)
Chantelle secured me an appointment with the dentist Aletia Kruger who operates her practice out in Strand (81 Fagan street if you’re interested) and funnily enough, as these things tend to happen, the day before the appointment was scheduled for, I was enjoying a nice fat meat samoosa for lunch when a loud cracking noise announced the end for half of my neglected tooth. (It looks actually pretty weird at the moment. Half a tooth remains, but jutting out of the middle of it is the metal filling, still standing large and in charge, and presenting an interesting textured thingie for my tongue to keep playing with!)
Thursday rolled along and I successfully navigated my way to the dentist’s offices, where I filled in the lengthy form and got acquainted with the very pleasant Dr. Aletia who probed around for a bit and then announced the good news that she can’t seem to find any other cavities in my mouth, other than the half a tooth of course. Plenty of build up on the teeth yes (oral hygienist, here I come!), but no other problems as far as she can tell. However, the bad news is that the neglected tooth was far past the point of saving and would need to be pulled. So a prescription for five days worth of antibiotics was put in my hand and a dual booking for first the oral hygienist and then the dentist was made for the next week Wednesday when the big heave ho would take place, removing my not so shiny (probably more black than white) half a tooth, and in the process, leaving behind a big gaping hole that I’m sure is going to make drinking through a straw a whole lot more fun.
Of course, all of this doesn’t come for free, and with me only being on a hospital plan with Discovery Health, the funds for this little dental adventure has to come straight from my pocket. All in all the bill looks to be just short of R900, so not great, but actually far, far less than what I was dreading, seeing as Dave just walked out of the dentist’s office with a bill to the tune of well over R2,000!
So yeah, I’m going to have a little mini passion gap pretty soon, which funnily enough, Chantelle doesn’t appear to be quite impressed about. She keeps throwing about phrases like “I told you so”, “your own fault”, “you should have” and such like! :P
(Footnote: Yes, yes, I wouldn’t have been in this predicament – and still had a full set of teeth – if only I had gotten it sorted out right away. What can I say? Dentists scare me! :P)
Jessica hasn’t been 100% as of late, snotty, endless coughing, restless at night, moaning more than usual – pretty much all things that you normally associate with babies when it comes to Winter time. However, we’ve been keeping a close check on her temperature (we have about three or four different tools/methods) and so far no fever, meaning no drastic action other than clean-up operations have been on the go.
However, we have been suspecting that dribble monster’s teeth might finally be on their way, what with all the chewing and gnashing going on (never mind the fact that teething gel seems to calm her down), and at long last it would seem like our suspicions are now accurate, with some very telltale hard bumps towards the back of her gums, lower jaw, front and center.
They haven’t started cutting through yet but they seem to be definitely there, so I guess we had better start stocking up on sleep before the big unhappiness rains down upon us! :)
And on another completely unrelated note, Jessie is still loving the Baby Steps creche, and thus far I have to admit that I’m pretty impressed with the operation. They keep us up to date with the log book, Chantelle has built up a good report with the girls on duty, and Jessie seems to be advancing far faster than what she would have if left to our own devices.
That said, it is also apparent that Jess is definitely behind in terms of her developmental growth at this stage, but seeing as she’s a prem that is pretty normal taking into account what we’ve been told, and thus definitely nothing to get too stressed about at this point in time (try telling that to her depressed Mommy though!).
As for me, I’m just happy she still laughs and smiles at all her silly daddy’s antics and songs, and I’m determined to enjoy/milk her to the fullest while she still finds me at least somewhat amusing! ;)