A little over two years ago, Conner fell and knocked his front two teeth up into his gums. After a trip to the ER that night, and a trip the dentist the next day, we decided to let the teeth be to see what they would do. There was a chance that they might heal. Then after about three weeks it became apparent that the teeth were not healing and they needed to be pulled. So Conner lost his first two teeth, via the dentist, at age 4 1/2.
Then about two years ago, three months after Conner fell and hurt his teeth, Micah ran into a wall and knocked one of his teeth loose. After the very recent drama with Conner's teeth, we were of course very concerned. But Micah's tooth wasn't nearly as bad off as Conner's had been. So we waited to see what would happen. It did okay, began to tighten up and everything...and then he hit it again. And again. And again. Seriously, for a year and a half nearly time the kid fell, he hit that tooth. Eventually it began to turn dark. A dentist visit confirmed that the tooth was, in fact dying. And the dentist was right -- about six months ago it began to get infected, and at the age of just over 3 1/2, following in his big brother's footsteps, Micah lost his first tooth via the dentist.
And then about six weeks ago, Joey fell and knocked his front two teeth loose. Once again, we hoped and prayed that it would tighten up on it's own. And once again, the tooth started turning dark -- this time much faster than Micah's did. As it has gotten darker and darker, and had pretty much lost all hope for that tooth and was beginning to try to accept the fact that all three of them would lose a tooth the "wrong" way before anyone lost one the "right" way. It was just a matter of time before my brood of little boys would be mistaken for a pee-wee hockey team.
I took him to the dentist to have it checked out. I was expecting to hear that it was dying, be told that it would have to come out soon, and learn what to watch for to know that it was time. In my world, so far anyway, when we knock a tooth hard, it comes out. That's just the way it is.
BUT, I learned something new. Apparently, when the tooth turns darkly quickly after the injury (as in weeks instead of months) it is a sign of a bruised tooth. (Yeah, I'd never heard of a "bruised tooth," either.) I didn't quite follow all of it, but in Joey's case (this time anyway) all signs are pointing to a bruised tooth instead of a dying one. It may continue to get darker, but at some point it will begin to lighten again. Since thumb sucking continues to aggravate it, it may never quite tighten back up and it slightly lessens the chances of it healing...but we have every reason to expect that this tooth will get better! Barring any additional injuries (a pretty big "if" there!) it will probably hang in there with him until the permanent tooth is ready to take it's place!
What good news!! I love getting good news from the dentist!!
Tiffany (Bret's sister) got three mouth guards for the me the other day. Now that I have hope again, I think I just may go permanently install them... :)