Dave is on nighttime tooth duty.

His routine with Adelaide works extremely well.

Since Adelaide loves to count, they count while brushing.

Very methodically, he brushes all her baby teeth.

As she gets older and stronger, it becomes more difficult to get that toothbrush where it needs to be.

But he does it with a smile on his face.

Dad of the Year.

I am on morning tooth duty.

We sing.

The song is as random as our weather.

Sometimes I throw in some falsetto.

Other times, she giggles to my over-the-top operatics.

Most mornings, it's just some made up song about how I need her to just let mommy get in a few more good brushes.

To the tune of some ancient nursery rhyme.

I am thankful Dave does such an amazing job on his watch.

I don't think I'm earning any points with the dental association.

Adelaide loves routine.

She doesn't like when I brush her teeth on the rare evenings that her daddy is gone.

She tantrums and yells, "Dada! Dada!"

But when Dave brushes her teeth in the morning, she never asks for me.

I'm not seen as her primary dental provider.

Unless we are actually going to the dentist.

That somehow became my territory.

I really thought my husband loved me more than that.

I had a pre-meeting with the dentist before we scheduled Adelaide's first appointment.

I explained Adelaide's disabilities, behavior, limitations, and how she loved counting.

Our family dentist was totally honest with me.

"I don't have a lot of experience with kids like this. But if I can't do it, I will help you find someone who can."


I was thinking that Dave should've become a pediatric dentist.

But I thought better about telling our dentist, who had been practicing since I was a child, that I thought my completely untrained husband just might be the right man for this job.

We set up Adelaide's appointment.

I wasn't nervous at all.

Until a complete stranger at the grocery store said, "Whoa! That kid grinds her teeth a lot. Is she going to grind them all the way down?"

I didn't even know this was a possibility.

What on earth?

Now we just needed our appointment.

Like yesterday!

Did she need medication?


A mouth guard?

When her appointment finally came, I rolled her in and tried to remind myself that she picks up on my stress.

Stay calm, Lyndse.

Her teeth aren't ground off.

Everything's okay.

I decided to keep Adelaide in her wheelchair, which tilts in space, instead of holding her in the reclining dental astronaut chair.

She tried to eat the paper bib, so we put a regular bib on her.

She wouldn't wear the glasses, because she hates glasses.

She won't even wear her real glasses.

She was great during the tooth counting, because they used the alphabet.

She loves letters.

But then they tried to check her teeth.

And the world ended.

I started counting.


That was daddy's trick.

She started raging.

That's when I realized I would need to sing.

In a dentist's office full of strangers.

I performed song after embarrassing song until we were done.

The whole office was laughing as we left.

I got a pat on the back.

One patient shouted out, "You should be on the radio!"

Pretty sure no self-respecting stations will play "Adelaide Is So Awesome At The Dentist"...my one hit.

But we survived the dentist.

With lots of screaming, laughing, biting, and owing many hygienists a day at the spa.

Actually, that's what my husband owes me.

I still can't believe he got out of dentist duty.

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