Friday, December 2, 2011

Adventures in pain

Yesterday was the big day at the dentist. I was apprehensive going in which is a little odd for me. I am not afraid of dentists. Nine years worth of orthodontic work and you get used to people shoving their hands in your mouth. This was different than what I was used to though; this time there was a root canal.

I have had all of four cavities in my life. I remember the fillings as being quick and only mildly annoying. I have never had a root canal but have heard a million horror stories about them. I mean really awful stories to the point I would rather them pull the tooth and put in a fake one.

Now I know when I say this you will all think I am being sarcastic, but I am not. The root canal was the easiest thing I did all day. No really it was. I don't mean to say everything else was so horrific that the misery of the root canal was shadowed. I mean to say the root canal was no big deal. Other than my jaw getting sore from being propped open the worst part of it was the noise. It was really simple. I count myself as lucky to have had a good experience.

The fillings were more intense than I remembered. Of course I was having 7 fillings so that might have something to do with it. She also took a good deal of time grinding my teeth to make my bit sit better. My mouth started to wake up around the end of the fillings so that got to be uncomfortable.

The worst part was the deep cleaning and scaling. The numbness was wearing off quickly, and while she gave me more shots she was working before they completely took effect. By the end of that part I was shaking from my muscles having tensed so much. I almost cried.

The last thing they did was extracting one of my two remaining wisdom teeth. She said she would have done both but there wasn't the time and she was pretty sure she would have to drill into the bone. Yea that in no way excited me. The one she did pull proved to be difficult. It kept breaking when she grabbed it which was less than ideal. When she finally got a hold of it she twisted and yanked for what seemed like forever. I was fairly certain she was going to have to find someone stronger to yank it out.

In the end she told me not to swallow no matter what as she was making the last pull on the tooth. Sure enough the thing slipped and dropped into my mouth. She and the assistant both tried to get it but they couldn't. She told me to spit it out, but I couldn't feel my tongue so that was pretty much out of the question. I did however feel it as it started to go into my throat and began coughing. She grabbed me by the shirt and jerked me forward slapping me on the back, and out it popped. It was pretty gross when she picked it up off the floor to show to me.

After all was said and done I spent a little over four hours in the chair. They did my root canal, seven fillings, four crowns, a deep cleaning and a scaling, and an extraction. I have to go back in three weeks for my permanent crowns and then another three weeks after that for a polishing and the other extraction and my final temporary crown, then another three weeks for my last permanent crown. After that I have cleanings every three months for a year.

I am pretty sure that after this less than pleasant experience I will make sure to get more regular maintenance on my teeth. I really don't want to have to try my luck at the root canal again. Next time I might not have such a good experience.

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