Finding calm in the chaos

Finding calm in the chaos

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

the Sandman Chronicles: a trip to the dentist

I recently made my biannual trip to the dentist last week. I strongly dislike the dentist--not the dentist personally, of course, but just the whole process of having people poke & prod at my mouth and then lecturing me about not flossing often enough. Seven years ago, I made one of these appointments and was poked at so long, I ended up throwing up on the poor hygienist. Since I'd never had any cavities, I vowed never to go back again.

Fast forward 5 years and my OB is hounding me about routine dental care, how it will prevent preterm labor, blah-blah-blah, so I decide to put my dental insurance to good use (we'd been paying for it for 5 years and never even used it!). Not only am I wary about the dentist again, but this time, I'm pregnant--in the throes of morning sickness--and am sure I will throw up on the hygienist. That hygienist was very, very good to me, but the dentist found 7 little cavities and, since then, I've been faithful about my regular dental check ups.

So, I found a new dentist in Lewiston that my mom & daycare provider both recommended. I had a good, thorough exam and he started asking me random questions. Does my jaw ever click? Do I get headaches? Does my jaw hurt in the morning? Do I sleep poorly?

Um, yeah. Not that I thought it was worth mentioning.

So, while he's doing his exam, he starts talking, "When I was in dental school, we had a little boy, who was a super easy baby, so we thought we'd have another one. That daughter was not an easy baby. She was super colicky and never slept through the night. So, with all the sleepless nights and stress of school, I started grinding my teeth. I didn't even know I was doing it until one of my classmates pointed out how flat my teeth were."

Change "dental school" to "new job" and I felt like he was describing my life! Crazy.

He pointed out that my jaw clicked oddly and my canines are now flattened. So, I got fitted for some bruxism splints.

At the end of my visit, I had to ask, "So, did your daughter ever start sleeping better?" I wish I hadn't asked. It makes me even more hopeless.

(Of course, when I shared all this with Lala, she got all huffy about the dentist and me trying to place the blame on poor Andie. "That stress is all from your job! You should get your boss to pay for those teeth guards. You can't really blame those sleepless nights on our sweet baby!" Yes, I'm pretty sure my job contributes to my stress, but it's not my boss who's waking me up in the middle of the night for a 2am feeding).


Candace said...

"preterm labor"???? are you pregnant?

Amy said...

So did his baby ever start sleeping through the night?

Jen said...

No, Candi, I'm not pregnant. I was then, but not now.

Amy, no, no, no! There is no hope for us parents of bad-sleepin' babies.