I still remember the day that I learned that shark's teeth grew in rows and rows, with the new teeth coming in behind the old ones. I couldn't have been more than about nine. The idea of multiple rows of already deadly sharp teeth was enough to make me even more afraid of swimming... even if the chances of said shark being in the pool were exceptionally small.
But just as this past winter break began, it turned out that I was about to have a much more personal encounter with shark teeth. This time, in the mouth of my six year old.
Both of his first new bottom teeth started coming up behind the baby teeth. I checked on-line, and most sites and responses said to give it a month, the roots would wear away and the adult teeth would move forward with no problem. But to set up an appointment with the dentist if, after that time, they hadn't.
I waited a month. And one of the teeth finally started getting wiggly. Last week, we tied a piece of dental floss around it and pulled it out-- and at that moment, it was the longest root on a baby tooth that I'd ever seen. It was clearly as long as the tooth, on one side.
But then there was that other baby tooth. That wasn't loose at all. I waited another week, but it's plain to see that his new grown up teeth are practically in at this point. So I set him up with a dentist appointment for this morning.
That might not be a great photo, but I didn't realize roots were -ever- that long! The fat 1/3 on the left? Yeah-- that's the part that was above the gums. And I have to queasily admit, I think that little piece that projects funny towards us on the right side might be a bit of jaw. But the dentist said he should be just fine and the new tooth should move forward just like the other one did. And my boy was an absolute trooper. He asked for the laughing gas, said it felt numb when the doctor asked, and even tonight, says it doesn't hurt.
When I showed him his tooth as we were getting in the truck and getting ready to take him to school, his eyes got big and he said, "Whoa! Maybe the toothfairy'll give me a -dollar- for that one!"
You know what, Buddy, I think she just might!