14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'

A 14-month-old baby girl died Tuesday after being put under anesthesia for a dental crown procedure on teeth that had cavities, according to her mother, Betty Squier.

Daisy Lynn Torres was taken to Austin Children's Dentistry in North Austin for the "routine" dental procedure, but halfway through the treatment, her mother was informed that a complication had occurred and an ambulance was on the way to take her daughter to the hospital.

Within a few hours, Daisy Lynn was pronounced dead – leaving her family in a state of shock and confusion.

A toxicology report determining the official cause of death will not be ready for weeks, PEOPLE has confirmed with the Travis County medical examiner's office.

Lara Anton, the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners spokeswoman, says they have opened an investigation into Daisy Lynn's death.

"We are feeling numb and lost and pained," the grieving mother, 26, tells PEOPLE. "We just want some answers. You trust your doctors, your dentists, thinking they know best."

She adds, "You don't take your child into the dentist thinking it will be the last time you see them alive."

14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'| Death, Medical Conditions, Real People Stories
14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'| Death, Medical Conditions, Real People Stories


Squier and her husband, Elizandro Torres, have been replaying Tuesday's tragic events over and over in their heads – wondering if there was some way they could have prevented Daisy Lynn's death.

"I have so much anger," says Squier. "If only we had missed our appointment that day. If only we hadn't set our alarm clocks. If only we had gotten stuck in traffic… What if we had decided not to do the procedure, but you can't go back in time."

Austin Children's Dentistry spokesperson Sarah Marshall says administering anesthesia in pediatric dentistry is "not uncommon."

"Often with younger children, anesthesia is the safer route so they are not moving around. There is also less potential for a reaction to pain medication," Marshall tells PEOPLE. "We've never had anything happen like this. It's very tragic. Our thoughts are with the family right now."

14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'| Death, Medical Conditions, Real People Stories
14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'| Death, Medical Conditions, Real People Stories


Squier and her daughter arrived early for her 6 a.m. appointment, playing with a train set as they waited for the anesthesiologist and dentist to arrive. The mother hardly thought this moment would be one of the last they would share together.

"I talked with the anesthesiologist before he put her under," says Squier. "He was telling me how beautiful my baby was and how the procedure would be very quick and that I would be able to see her soon."

Daisy Lynn sat on her mother's lap as the contracted anesthesiologist administered the medicine. Squier, squeezing her daughter's hand, whispered "It's going to be okay, Daisy, you'll be done soon."

She then watched Daisy fade into unconsciousness.

"My last words to her were, 'I'll be back for you soon,' " recalls Squier. "But Daisy was the one who never came back to me."

14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'| Death, Medical Conditions, Real People Stories
14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'| Death, Medical Conditions, Real People Stories


Ten minutes into the procedure, the dentist told Squier they were going to put crowns on six of Daisy Lynn's teeth instead of the originally planned two.

"When they finished half of the crowns, she went into cardiac arrest," Squier says. "We don't know exactly what happened, and we won't know until the medical reports come back."

"The dentist came into the waiting room, looking really concerned. He told me what had happened, but that she was stable. I tried to go back to see her, but he said everything was under control. He said this had never happened before, but that she was in good hands. He told me the EMS was on the way."

Emergency workers put Daisy Lynn on a stretcher as her mother looked on in confusion.

"One of the workers came over and told me to give her a kiss goodbye," says Squier. "So I laid my head on her forehead and gave her a kiss. But I could tell it was already too late. I kissed her forehead, but she was already gone. I could see it. But no one wanted to tell me."

14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'| Death, Medical Conditions, Real People Stories
14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'| Death, Medical Conditions, Real People Stories


Robert Delarosa, president of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, says putting young children under anesthesia for a procedure like this is "unfortunately very common."

"When a tooth gets decay as a baby, there are a number of treatments that depend on the size of the cavity and how much of the tooth structure is involved," Delarosa tells PEOPLE. "Taking the teeth out prematurely leads to complications with growth, development, speech and chewing. To fill a tooth with that much decay has longterm functionality effects. You're better off doing a crown or putting a cap on."

He adds, "You can't just leave it [the cavity] in there, because that can lead to problems like disfigured facial expressions, cellulitis and other serious problems."

Delarosa says around 60% of children have some sort of dental decay by the age of 5.

"Dental disease in baby teeth is the same, if not worse, in a younger patient," he explains. "Baby teeth are very prone to decay. Cavities are the most common pediatric dental disease. Cavities are the most chronic childhood disease in this country, and the biggest reason is prolonged bottle feeding."

14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'| Death, Medical Conditions, Real People Stories
14-Month-Old Girl Dies After 'Routine' Dental Procedure: 'I Kissed Her Forehead, But I Knew She Was Gone'| Death, Medical Conditions, Real People Stories


With the help of donations from a YouCaring site, Squier and Torres are in the process of planning Daisy Lynn's funeral.

"For the little time we had her, Daisy Lynn was a beautiful, sweet joy," says Squier. "We used to have this little thing we did. I would say, 'Give me your pretty eyes baby!' And she would bat her eyelashes at me. It's my favorite memory of her, fluttering her eyes and giggling."

The parents hope that by sharing their story they will prevent tragedies like this from happening in the future.

"I hope no parent ever has to go through this," says Squier. "You should feel comfortable and safe at the doctor or dentist office – never scared for your child's life."

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