Eating, drinking, swallowing – goodness how easily they come to us. Except for the last 18 hours for me, my wisdom tooth has finally been taken out and gone away. When the dentist said ‘To fill it you would need a root canal, possibly a crown, or as you don’t use it, we could just take it away’ it all sounded so easy.
That was last year, the closer I came to actually having the bloody thing taken out, the more nervous I got. I’d already had 2 fillings replaced by this dentist (that’s the thing when you have a few minor things done in your teens, they come back to bite you on the bum in your 30s), and cried. Pathetic, but he wasn’t exactly gentle and I hadn’t had anything major done before, so what did I have to compare it to?
So yesterday, I sat in the chair, took my glasses off (still got the last remnants of conjunctivitis so can’t wear any lenses), it is all blurry but I can still see the foot long instruments and saws hanging on the wall, I’m kidding. I plug my iPhone in, listen to an audio book on near enough full blast, but can still hear and feel the bzzzzzzzzzzzzz in my head.
Yesterday I had to have 3 minor fillings replaced as well as the tooth coming out on the top left of my mouth, again he wasn’t exactly gentle and I knew that the biggie was coming at the end of the appointment, ‘You can’t fill a tooth with blood in the way’, he so helpfully pointed out. After nearly an hour in the chair, I’m crying again, my head has been tilted every which way; he also put in a piece of rubber so when I swallowed my tongue wouldn’t come up to my teeth. Not pleasant, not my idea of fun and that I had flicked through Marie Claire and read about people liking rubber, for fun and games, if you know what I mean, filled me with horror as I thought they would probably be enjoying this.
Up the chair came, in went the longest, hugest pliers and oooh goody my head was being wiggled about again as he tried to pull the tooth out. I’ve never felt anything like it, I couldn’t help myself, hot, fat tears and a low moan in my throat, which turned to a shriek as he finally got the thing out. He patted me on my shoulder and said, ‘Are you ok?’ By this time a gibbering wreck, I thought I better just nod, not smack him.
Any hoo, the joy is not over as he now tilts the chair back again and shoves a healing pack the size of a fist into the hole left behind. I am given some gauze to bite on, plus a few extra packs if I carry on bleeding and sent from the surgery. My health insurance covers $319, I have to pay $399. Good job it is a PIN, not a signature card, I am now shocked at how much it was too, so don’t think I’d have the strength to sign. I get in the car, as we drive out, Dan trying to drive a manual and hold my hand at the same time, Nelly from work is driving in with her husband Raul, who is more scared of the dentist than I am. They wave gaily at us, grimly we wave back.
We get home, Dan hots me up some soup which I slurp through a straw. I take industrial strength painkillers and drift off fitfully to sleep. I get up this morning and inspect my mouth, blood everywhere. Cleaning my teeth, I spit into the sink Sweeney Todd’s barber shop. I take another painkiller and get back into bed, emailing my boss that ‘I look like I have the mumps on one side, my left cheek is red and sore, and talking is difficult, so I am sorry I won’t be in today.’
When your child is teething, have some sympathy for them. I’ve had one out, let alone what it must feel like having them coming through, one after the other.
The only saving grace from this? I only ever had one wisdom tooth in there, so I won’t have to do this again. Although, now that is gone, will my IQ start to depreciate with it? Now I’ve got this off my chest, I am going back to bed with a book. I’ll be the one drooling if you need me.