All Of Which Is To Say, Nice Try But In The End You'll Still Be On The Hook For The Co-Pay

I had to get a cavity filled at the dentist yesterday and while we waited for the anesthesia to take, I zoned out by studying a tooth chart on the wall.

It was one of those 1980s-looking things that you might see in a science classroom and the top half showed a child's mouth, along with the ages at which certain teeth are expected to fall out. I don't know that I realized that the first ones to go are the middle ones, then finally the back ones go last. When you think back it makes sense, but like a lot of things, you don't realize there's an order of things. Like verb endings or whatnot.

But sitting there as my gum numbed, it occurred to me — and I thought to ask the dentist — Why do kids need to get cavities filled? Because if you're going to lose those teeth anyway, what difference does it make whether they rot away? Or, alternatively, why not just pull them out?

It was a good question, the dentist didn't quite say, though he allowed that he didn't totally understand every aspect of it until going to dental school.

Apparently if a baby tooth is missing long before the adult tooth comes in, the adult tooth might come in at a strange angle. Then there's the obvious reason you would get a cavity filled, which is that cavities hurt.

Oh yeah, right. Whoops.

He did add that he doesn't do fancy white tooth-colored fillings for children, "because they're just going to come out." So all that made sense. And now I know.

Posted: February 16th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Something I Learned Today, The Cult Of Domesticity | Tags: , , ,

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