Da Tooth: Story of an injury mystery

*I made the pictures giant in this one because baby teeth are too tiny to see what happened in the standard size.

Lily almost gave me a heart attack the other night.

We were in her room getting ready for bed and she says to me “I’m getting bigger. My tooth came out.” her finger was in her mouth.

I said “Yes, you are getting bigger, but you won’t lose your teeth for a while.”

Then she moved her finger and I saw that a good chunk of her front tooth was missing at a jagged angle.

“My tooth came out.”

When you first see something like this as a mother, it looks so much more giant than it actually is.

After I died of shock, I explained to her that her tooth hadn’t come out because she was getting bigger, it came out because it was hurt and broken and it would have to be fixed. She said it hurt a lot, so my husband took her to the emergency room at 9 pm on a Friday and was turned away with numbers to a dentist.

This angle, though far off, shows best how insane the break is.

We are baffled as to what happened, and that’s the “kids play” part of things here. Lily had been running up and down the hall with her 20-month-old cousin chasing and throwing beach balls. They’d been giggling and having a blast. We never heard any big bang. We never heard any crying. She just kept playing and having fun. This whole tooth fracture remains a giant mystery.

If you see her tooth fragment on the floor in this picture, let me know. We never found it.

Lily is only 3 1/2 years old and while she talks well, it’s still hard to get her to tell us what happened. When she does tell us things, we’re never sure if what she’s saying actually happened, she imagined it or she’s just saying it because we mentioned something similar. Three year olds are just too suggestable! If we asked her if she broke it blowing bubbles, she’d probably say yes.

After a lot of questioning, we THINK she fell in the hallway and bumped her tooth on the floor, it hurt, but she got up and kept playing because she was having too much fun to be bothered by complaining about some silly tooth pain. There’s a good chance that we put this story into her head and something else entirely different happened. There’s even a chance it happened the day before and it didn’t register to me when I looked at her.

I was really surprised she remembered her teeth came out when she got older, but I was more surprised when she kept correcting us when we told her the doctor would fix her tooth.

“No, not the doctor! I need to go to the dentist!”


I spent a sleepless night freaking out that the dentist might pull her tooth or leave it in there jagged and painful looking for the next 2-4 years until she gets her permanent teeth! I know kids with missing or chipped teeth are cute, but I wanted her beautiful perfect little mouth back!

I hope this beautiful little mouth is more than just a memory.

Tiny Lily sat in the giant chair like a superstar even though it was her first time there. I, on the other hand, was a nervous wreck waiting for the x-rays to develop and hoping she wouldn’t bite the dentist. I’ve been negligent in making her first dental appointment and now her first dental experience is THIS?! Will there be a dental phobia for life?

I was so relieved when we found out she not only gets to keep the tooth, but they will fix the chip next week because she fractured it so close to the nerve. You have no idea how relieved I am about this! Well, not the part where she fractured her tooth close to the nerve and will have a sensitive tooth for a week, but the part where we get her perfect smile back. Thank goodness.

That beautiful little smile will hopefully make a return appearance Tuesday.

Four days into this thing and the chip tooth is kind of growing on me as cute, but still! Nice healthy-looking teeth are preferred.

Gapped tooth kids are definitely cute once you get over the initial shock!

I was about to say that this was Lily’s first major injury, but then I remembered the ER trip for a concussion following her plummet from her crib at 17 months. Somehow, I was more freaked out about this tooth thing than I was about her head. God, I’m vain! Though in my defense, she was acting fine with the head thing so I was fairly certain we were at the ER just as a precaution. This broken tooth had visible and potentially semi-permanent implications! (VAIN!!!!)

In any case, this was our first injury mystery. I am sure there are many more to come!



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4 Responses to Da Tooth: Story of an injury mystery

  1. Pingback: Big Tooth | Creative Kids Play

  2. Sarah G

    The amount of knowledge she demonstrated (bigger kids lose teeth, they see dentists) makes me wonder if she didn’t learn them from someone else recently and decided to help the process along. Little kids often want to be ‘big’ kids.

  3. Pingback: Inaugural Swing Set Injury | Creative Kids Play

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