UPDATE: bella’s experience with dr. edward dove

gia and i are totally grateful and almost overwhelmed at the support we have received over this situation.  THANK YOU for your kind words of support, for your prayers, and for sharing this story with your friends.  in less than 24 hours after i posted about our experience, my blog received over 13,000 views, and we have already heard from two separate people that they actually had appointments with dove and canceled them!

perhaps the most important thing for us at this point was hoping and praying that bella would simply return to normal. as i mentioned previously, bella was far less enthusiastic and energetic than her “normal” self.  one simple example was that gia took bella to the disney store at the mall — normally, bella would basically sprint to the store, with gia struggling to keep up.  bella was so subdued on that day, however, that bella actually even asked to get in the stroller and go home.  at any rate, i am VERY happy to say that within the last few days, bella has been a LOT better.  she still says her teeth hurt a little, and even mentions going to the dentist (in trepidation), but we are hopeful that the trauma  should pass — and are taking steps to re-build her trust in anyone in the medical field.

since so many of you asked about the steps we will take from here — and suggested everything from calling the police to filing complaints with dental boards and insurance companies — i’ll just say a quick word:  first, let me say that it is very tempting for us to just leave it alone… there is so much within us that simply wants to move on with our lives, to leave this in the past, and seek a normal life going forward — rather than re-hashing all this over and over again.  BUT, already knowing that because of my previous post, at least a few other children have already canceled their appointments with dove, i still feel the need to get the word out regarding this dentist.  so please, if you are in Fresno, Bakersfield, Chatsworth, Lancaster, or any other place where dr. dove practices, PLEASE let them know about our experience (or point them to the blog).  further, knowing that what really gets the attention of people like this is a dent in their wallet, i will be contacting lawyers to see if it will go anywhere. i doubt it will, and i have no interest whatsoever from profiting from this, but i’ll do it just to see what happens.  i will also be contacting ALL of the dental boards that will listen.

we have already contacted kaiser, who referred us to this dentist, but they said while the complaint will be on file there, they will basically do nothing because we need to contact our insurance provider (delta dental).  we have done this, and are waiting for a response.

some of our friends with media contacts have forwarded our story to them — if somehow this gets picked up by local media, i will certainly share our story.

in the end, after talking with a our dentist friend, unfortunately we think this kind of thing happens a little more than we would like to imagine.  my friend referred to it simply as the “old school of dentistry,” where the dentist does whatever it takes to “do his job.”  it’s all traumatizing, reckless, outrageous, etc — but not out of the ordinary and certainly not “illegal.”  in other words, this guy is probably safe to continue practicing dentistry in this manner.  i know — it’s incredibly disturbing and we hope that this line of thinking in pediatric dentistry changes drastically, but the most we can do is spread the word regarding this particular dentist, to raise awareness that this stuff actually happens, and the importance of choosing a GREAT dentist (rather than simply trusting the guy who says he’s a professional.

There are some GREAT dentists out there — don’t be skeptical of everyone.  But do your homework, listen to your friends, send me an email, etc, before you see any pediatric dentist.

once again, THANK YOU ALL for your kind words and prayers.  we are thankful for each of you.


10 responses to “UPDATE: bella’s experience with dr. edward dove

  1. My husband and I were both apalled at your experience and we are so happy to hear that your little girl is getting better. I shared your story on facebook and mentioned my own need for a dentist for my little girls (5 and 1), a very scary thing in light of reading your story. I immediately received about 8 responses with name and number of good dentists (even one who lets them watch a movie furing their cleaning! …where was he during my childhood?!)
    If he is truly within his “rights” and cannot be held to legal recourse, the best thing to do is get all of his business aways from him: Angie’s List, Better Business Bureau, insurances & Kaiser, whatever it takes.
    The only thing we can do is pass names of good doctors and dentists for our precious little ones. Those who deserve it, like with many other professions, will keep their business by word of mouth!
    Thank you so much for your honesty and we pray Miss Bella continues to improve. =)

  2. Amy Helmuth Groppetti

    OMG you need to share this with the authorities it is child abuse I have been in the dental field for 12 years

  3. I had a similar experience when I was a child except that my mother came flying into the room a half a second after I screamed for her and the dentist is lucky that all she did was remove me from his office. Your daughter will probably need therapy as will you for not going in right away when you heard her cry. Clearly it is not your fault that the dentist is a complete psychopath but for you to leave her in there to be tortured by him is beyond me. I hope he is charged with assault and that your daughter receives therapy and monetary damages for her pain and suffering at the very least.

  4. I am soooo heartbroken over what your baby had to go through! I had a traumatic experience at the dentist that kept me away for years, but in the past year I met a dentist that has made the entire procedure painless. I actually look forward to my dental appts. Please feel free to contact me via email. weddings@platinumimagingphotography.com I will gladly give you his info. It changed my life. =)

  5. Michael Hamblin

    I hope you are able to find a dentist that you are comfortable with and take Bella to soon. I’m sure it will make a world of difference if you can find one that is compassionate about this situation – I can’t really advise you, but if you can start with a “warming up” appointment where you just take Bella to just talk with the new dentist in a non-threatening manner, without doing any work (unless she is willing to let him check things out on the first visit) then this will go a LONG way to building up trust. Especially if he can get her to laugh 😉 They say it is the best medicine. My son is very sensitive and takes a while to warm up to new people, so I am careful not to push him beyond his comfort zone.

    I understand not wanting to go on a crusade; you didn’t choose to have this enter your lives. At the same time, I think it helps others to be in the loop with folks who are taking action and be part of that network. Some people do respect your opinion more when it is clear you have nothing to gain by sharing your story. Helping others is part of the process, knowing that this didn’t happen for nothing, and knowing that “all things work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose.”

  6. melinda melton

    so glad to hear your lil girl is doing better …you really should get this doctors name out there so no more kids have to go threw this…im not a dentist but i am a mom of 4 and have been to several appointments it took many different doctors till i found the right one ..my middle child has had a lot of evasive work done and he was also 4 but he was put all the way to sleep at an out patent facility my kids love the dentist and i pray that bella heals and you can find a dentist u trust

  7. I am so sorry to hear about this nightmare your family experienced. I
    would like to strongly encourage you to see a good homeopath
    to help your daughter. When my son was 4 9 now 6) he had several cavities
    and had a lot of dental work done as well but did not have a bad experience at the dentist. However, over the next several months
    began to decline rapidly neurologically. LOOOOOOOng story.
    He lost his sense of humor, stopped signing, had tics, etc. etc.
    Thanks to homeopathy he is his happy self again, singing, laughing etc.
    Our homeopath is Kari Kindem. You can google her. We live in NE.
    Wish I could help more, but wanted to mention that I STRONGLY
    thing you should have someone help her now at the early stages.

    Best of luck
    Mommy in Nebraska

  8. Thank you so much Brian for sharing this incident with so many people you have connected with through this blog. With your share you have connected with so many families. You have accomplished a lot in a very short amount of time. The next time any of your fellow bloggers and followers here step into a dentist they will be very watchful and that is a good thing. Dove is not the only one sadly practicing this way. Knowledge and spreading the word is key. With this strong group of people you have here as well as mine that was started on facebook we can be an unstoppable force. Not in a violent way but in a informational way to help others not end up in the same situation as you, I and so many others. What Dove did to our children is unacceptable and he should have some sort of answering to do. I also believe he should be relieved of all rights to practice any more. Please help me in getting this to every corner in every state in every city.
    We have just finished filming with Inside edition Investigation/ CBS and it will be airing here locally in Bakersfield on KBAK channel 29 @ 130am. It will cover some of the families here in California that Dove has effected. Please help me help you by sharing link to my facebook group where they can find so many other families that have decided to speak up about there children’s incidents. Thank you so much Brian!

  9. Raquel martinez

    I also ran into a dead end when trying to take action on this matter. I do know as a nurse that a patient is only allowed to be restrained with a signed consent. I don’t believe I signed a consent for that. It’s too bad this man is allowed to get away with this.

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