Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Teething: Are Teeth Evil?

I have a love/hate relationship with my teeth. I am a devoted carnivore. Therefore I need my teeth to enjoy the red meat I crave. Actually I am a food lover of all kinds. I grew up eating only southern food, but I have since branched out. My travels introduced me to strange new cuisines, and I love them all. Teeth are needed to eat no matter what you enjoy. Italian food requires teeth. Mexican food requires teeth. So does Chinese, Thai, German, and everything else not being served from a blender. From this point of view teeth are my friend.

Despite their helpfulness with food, my teeth have led to much pain in my life. The mere existence of teeth supports the need for a dentist. This person is paid great sums of money to execute a legal form of torture. I've had numerous bouts with the dentist. Most of my teeth have fillings. I have always brushed my teeth, but small cavities cropped up anyway. I haven't had one in around ten years, but I think that's because every tooth in my head is already filled. The removal of many of my baby teeth required professional help. I even had three permanent teeth pulled because my mouth was too small. Then there are the wisdom teeth. I had those removed too. Everyone is aware of the joys of wisdom teeth removal.

Throughout my life these two areas seemed to balance each other out. I would put up with my teeth's misbehavior in order to eat the foods I love. Not only that, but I once heard you had to eat in order to survive. Teeth are a necessary thing.

Fast forward to life with a 5 1/2 month old baby. Based on information I received from a stranger at Wal-Mart, Braden may be teething. He has always been a happy baby enjoying everyone and everything. In the past few days this normally cheerful baby has turned on us. He is only happy for very brief intervals. Those all too short times are followed up by crying and copious amounts of slobber. Nothing can keep him happy for very long.

Dealing with an unhappy baby is a trying thing. We are constantly trying to find new things that might make him happy. After all he can only eat and nap so much.

This new development has made up my mind. Teeth are evil. I can stand them hurting me in return for help with the food. Now they are hurting my son which in turn makes life unpleasant for everyone. Hopefully the culprit will show his face soon enough. Then we can return to a joyful existence until the next tooth tries to make its escape from the gum line.


Daddy Files said...

Yeah, it's just no fun. At all. But it's fairly brief.


The best thing we did for Will when he was teething was freeze pieces of fruit and then let him gnaw on it to his heart's content. It's not a cure all, but it helps.

Russ said...

Miss L popped two teeth a while back, then nothing. Now she is starting to slobber again, and get cranky again. Time to pull out the teething ring.

Swoozie said...

Still laughing because, well, aren't those Real Live Experts at WalMart(AKA shoppers) da Bomb?!

I say back away from my children and back away NOW!

On a serious note~~~teething babies are about the saddest things around. Especially when they are one of your own. Hope your Joyful Existence returns soon.....

Joel said...

We had about a week and a half window from the day we got home from the hospital, until Little Man started teething (I may be exaggerating, but it sure seemed that way).

He got four teeth (top front two, bottom front two) all at the same time, and it was the WORST THING I'VE EVER BEEN A PART OF. The kid was constantly in pain, and so we had to keep him half drugged (doctor's suggestion) with baby tylenol and ambesol. He chewed on everything that came within four feet of his mouth and was generally an unhappy camper.

Since then, he's gotten four more teeth but none of them have been nearly as bad. So, by way of a little hope, maybe this will be the worst of it.

surprised mom said...

Ok, first of all I can so relate to your experiences with your teeth. I have had extenstive tor . . . I mean dental work including gum surgery. Oh, so not fun. But nothing compares to seeing a baby suffer through teething pain. Nothing. Poor little Braden. Poor you and Arica for having to watch him suffer.

This is not advice . . . My grandma used to dip her finger in fine Irish whiskey and put it on our gums. Mom followed her lead. We were happy, the parents and grandparents were happy. I know doctors advise against this, but there's such a minute amount on the fingertip and it seems like it worked. But there was always the cold teething ring Mom popped out of the freezer, too.

I hope whatever pain relief method you use, Braden's pain, and yours, ends soon.

PJ Mullen said...

WARNING: The following comment is not to be construed as advice, just things we tried with some measure of success :)

I'm with surprised mom...I've used the single malt trick myself...now, its either going to help him with teething or develop an expensive taste in alcohol in which case he is screwed when he winds up at a kegger in hs or college. :)

I'm also with Daddy Files, my wife put frozen fruit in these pacifier type devices that are basically mesh. It allowed him to knaw (sp?) on the fruit while it was cold and mash the it thru the mesh to eat it. It worked ok, but the drugs worked much better.

My little guy cut five teeth all at once this past weekend and he has been a bear to deal with. I feel your pain. Teeth are evil.

Steely Dad said...

I hate to offer advice, especially of the unsolicited variety) as if I'M some expert (far from it) but for our kids we bought this little device (it looks like a large pacifier with a big loop handle and a mesh basket that you can open). Stick frozen pieces of fruit or even teething biscuits) and have him chew on that for a while. The mesh is great because you don't have to worry about him chocking on a small piece of food. It's a temporary fix by all means but it might just help enough. Keep in mind that he (and you guys) will get through this episode. Just wait till he starts walking and is hitting his head on everything! :)

Super Mega Dad said...

I so hear ya...the dentist is NOT your friend!

As far as the kids, we invested HEAVILY in Baby Orajel. We still have half finished tubes all over the house. They went through that stuff like candy. That and frozen teething rings. And I still remember all the DROOL! Oh the humanity!

Scott said...

This isn't advice, just a word of warning. Keep fingers clear of the mouth! I remember the first time my daughter chomped my finger with her brand new teeth. Those things are friggin sharp.