Friday, December 14, 2007

Dental Hygiene

There are so many aspects of the stay at home father gig that I don't feel adequately qualified for. I am not Mr. social, thus I don't have a lot, or any, play dates or afternoon teas set up. I have a bad temper. My grumbling and fussing at the idiots on the road, at the mall, and everywhere else probably doesn't set the best example. I lick my fingers, and slurp soup and cereal. I am not now, nor have I ever been, super clean. I'm not nearly as obsessed with germs as my wife. I won't say how often we do the hand washing thing during the day because my wife reads this. And, most worrisome, at least to me, I have never been good at the whole dental care thing.

My dentist, regardless of who or where, always say the same thing: you have great teeth and they would be even greater if you brushed and flossed once in a while. My first cavity was discovered only last year, in the wake of which I brushed and flossed every day for almost four months. That was also a first. Essentially, I have had healthy teeth and have done little to nothing to earn them. My wife is a conscientious tooth brusher, and has had more cavities than I've had clutzy accidents. What if Dipity inherits her mom's teeth and my propensity to remember that I have teeth? Already, she is off to a poor start. Her idea of brushing is to suck on the tooth brush, and the person mainly responsible for encouraging her efforts in dental hygiene is ... me. Her mom brushes with her every night, but the rest of the day is left to ... me. Can kids lose their first set of teeth to tooth decay? Can they lose their permanent teeth before they come in? Is she doomed even before her first trip to the dentist. Is dental hygiene at the whim of nurture or nature? Is there some idiot other than myself I can blame for this. Will Dipity still be cute with yellow plaque covered teeth? Will she still be able to get into a good medical school? Can I avoid this problem if she receives all of her food intravenously?

Maybe it's not too late for me to brush and floss regularly. Maybe, if there was less food in between my teeth I would be less irritable. Maybe a healthier smile would inspire me to give all the kitchen appliances a mirror like finish. And, I would eat like a prince for fear of staining my teeeth. Maybe every cloud truly does have a silver lining ... or a silver cap?

No comments: