River made his first visit to the dentist today. Mark didn’t want him to go, thinking it doesn’t make sense to invest money in teeth that are just going to fall out in a few years. But should there be any decay, I didn’t think we could leave them to decay for that long, nor would it teach River good hygienic practices.
So we went, paid $125 out of pocket and received the reassurance that despite putting him to bed with a bottle for a long time, not starting brushing until the later side, and not being the most precise brushers, he is doing fine. The dentist said he could tell River’s diet is healthy, which perhaps is the most important factor. River brushes himself, usually once a day, and oftentimes for what seems like not enough time. But he uses my electric toothbrush (he has his own head) and I think those toothbrushes are super at preventing cavities. I went through years with a new cavity every time I visited the dentist. Then I got an electric toothbrush and haven’t had a cavity since then.
The best part of the visit was the office. I have never seen a doctor’s office as cool as this one. It had video games, an interactive activity on a flat screen TV, a juke box, a dinosaur emerging from a wall, Native American headdresses, stained glass showing a giraffe, a huge selection of magazines for children and for adults, and PC and Mac computers available for parents to surf the internet. In his office, the dentist had the most impressive collection of toys I’ve ever seen – a cow that poops jelly beans, a large face that dispenses Kleenexs through the nose, a nose with a giant rubbery booger hanging out. I guess there has to be something to woo people since the office doesn’t take any insurance.
River is getting a very good impression of medical offices. When I told him the other day I was going to take him to the doctor due to a rash on his face, he said, “Yay! They have stickers and lollipops there!” Now the dentist will be associated with video games and toys.