The video of David After Dentist had Internet searchers abuzz on February 3, after receiving over one million hits and three thousand comments since January 30, 2009. David After Dentist has been linked to on digitaldaily.allthingsd.com, and dimemag.com named it their link of the day for February 3. The clip was taken by David’s father. Videoed after David’s dental surgery, it records the woozy ramblings of a kid still feeling the effects of the anesthetic used to knock him out. But is it as funny as his father and many viewers seem to think?
Comment reactions contained varied viewpoints. Evidence of the disparity of opinions can be found in the two comments left on poponthepop.blogspot.com where the blogger states, “What kind of stage father films his drugged innocent 7-year-old son just to get a few hits?” One poster agreed; the other did not . . . vehemently.
Many posters to the original You Tube video thought David was so smashed, he was hilarious. More than one said they wanted to go to their dentist and get some of the same kind of drugs. Some compared David’s slurred speech and fuzzy babbling to their own fond memories of college dorm parties.
Some posters said David was sweet and cute. Their responses reflect mild sympathy for what he was feeling.
A few posters stated the video was exploitative to the point of being not funny and indicative of a sick mind. Their opinion may have come from a recognition that dental surgery is considered major surgery, requires special treatment, and can have complications.
In May 2008, my seventeen-year-old daughter had oral surgery to remove four wisdom teeth. Two were completely impacted and two were partially impacted. David had one tooth removed.
Prior to surgery my husband and I were required to sign consent forms which informed us that our daughter could have an adverse reaction to the anesthesia or she could hemorrhage. In short, we were told the dental surgery was not without risks. I am sure David’s father was required to sign consent forms and was given similar information.
Our daughter’s condition after surgery was nothing to laugh about. While David’s father had to carry his son to the car after surgery, our daughter staggered out to the car with her father and the attending nurse supporting her on either side. Like David, her eyes were barely focused.
Unlike David, once in the car, she mumbled a few words and fell asleep. The surgical gauze in both sides of her mouth, necessary to stop the bleeding, prevented her from saying much. David did not appear to have gauze wadding, but dental stitches were mentioned in the conversation he had with his father. Our daughter had dental stitches in all four places where her wisdom teeth were removed.
What the viewer did not see in this short video was the amount of care likely needed after David’s dental surgery. After dental surgery, the patient has to refrain from sucking on straws or chewing for at least a day. David may not have needed cold compresses to reduce swelling as our daughter did. He likely had to rinse his mouth regularly with warm salt water after twenty four hours had passed. This is common post-surgical treatment.
Like her, he may have required scheduled doses of antibiotics and pain medications. The parents would have to watch for dry socket, a painful condition where the blood clot is prematurely removed from the area of the sutures.
Our daughter spent a miserable twenty-four hour period resting at home. We had no problems convincing her to follow the surgeon’s orders to restrict her physical activity for that time period. David, being a healthy seven-year-old, was probably a little more active.
Soon enough, the video of David’s return from his dental surgery will drop from the Google Trends list and into obscurity. The video does raise questions about what is considered humor, what constitutes exploitation, and what the reaction of the viewing audience should be.