(Another post to catch up)
Deena's first trip to the dentist was a success, but was also not at all what I expected. I knew she had major teeth issues and would need a lot of dental work. Initially, our holistic dentist was going to see her, but once we went over the extent of her issues, we decided it would be best for her to see a dentist that could perform the initial dental procedures under anesthesia in the hospital. It can be difficult to find a dentist that is familiar with osteogenisis imperfecta (OI) and Dentinogenesis Imperfecta (DI), which often goes along with OI type 3. After getting recommendations and calling around, I found a dentist, Dr. Hishaw at Tucson Smiles, who was familiar with both and who felt like she would be able to help Deena. Deena loved her and did great with her first x-rays and cleaning.
Deena does indeed need extensive work and we are currently working with the hospital to book a date for her that also works for her dentist. The good news is she was diagnosed with DI, so our health insurance may help pay for part of the hospital and anesthesia costs since that may fall under "medical" expenses. We, unfortunately, do not have dental insurance, so the dentist bills will still be our responsibility to cover, but it will be amazing if insurance helps with the rest.
The surprise of the day came when we looked at Deena's panoramic x-ray. Apparently, there is only one set of adult teeth left that haven't come in yet. The adult molars you can already see when she opens her mouth are all she has, other than that one set. Many of her adult teeth came down in to the wrong spot (notice the adult canines where a molar should be, for one). We don't know if she was just missing a bunch of baby teeth, if the baby teeth were pulled, or if they fell out really early, but there was nothing to guide her few adult teeth down, so they came down in to the wrong spots in a few places. It looks like she has a lot of teeth, but in reality, she has multiple places where the baby and adult teeth are side-by-side because the baby tooth never came out and the adult tooth came down early, in a different spot than it should have.
The plan for now is to deal with the decay and cavities in her mouth, leaving as many teeth as we can, even the baby teeth, as long as they are healthy and able to be saved. Eventually she will need partial dentures to help fill the gaps since bridges and implants aren't an option for her. I told her she was going to have a million dollar mouth, and she thought that was pretty great!
Deena loved the dentist so much that she came home and practiced finding cavities on Madi. Who knows, maybe she will be a dentist one day when she's bigger. She's a smart little cookie and I know she would make a great dentist!