Friday, April 3, 2009

Pearly Whites.

The night before the last day of ninth grade, I was playing in the back yard with our dog, Taffy. We were roughhousing and having a good time, and getting a little rowdy. At one point, we crashed right into one another, her head and my mouth.

Suddenly, I had all this stuff in my mouth. I thought she had rocks in her fur or something, but they were all white. Then, my tongue touched empty space where tooth used to be. Actually, teeth. Both front ones. Not completely gone, just badly chipped.

Badly. Even if I hadn't been an self-conscious ninth grader, this was major. Very noticeable. Not good.

We were able to get them repaired, and I've sinced had the laminates (which are now just considered fillings) re-done several times over the years. I had them re-done in 1989....and again today. (I have had cleanings and exams in the mean time - no worries!)

Ten minutes into today's appointment I remembered why I'd been avoiding this for so long. The anesthetics don't work so well for me, especially right in front. The first dose left me numb from cheek to cheek, I couldn't feel my nose, and for the first time ever, my eyelids were actually numb (THAT is a really strange sensation). My teeth, however, were still awake and hurty.

The second round of injections (a different anesthetic) helped a little, but I was still getting sharp jolts of pain in one tooth.

Third time is a charm, so finally, about the time my appointment was supposed to be over, they were able to get going with new fillings. One hour later I think I finally relaxed a little...and two hours later, it was all done.

Both Dr. Harvey and the Assistant were really gentle, really patient with me and my anxiety, and my new teeth look great. They have a nicer shape than my old (probably partially worn) fillings had. The color is a great match too. They feel really different though...and they'll take some getting used to, I suppose.

When was the last time you saw your dentist? Do you go regularly, or do you put it off like me?


homesteph said...

Oh ouch! I'm glad you made it through and your teeth are all set for a while!

When I was a child, I needed top-front teeth work. After 3 shots of Novocaine I was numb to my hairline and my teeth still hurt! Had to bite the dentist to stop him. The next dentist put just one shot in the roof of my mouth, not in front over the teeth, and it worked just fine. Where are they giving you the shots?

tenthingsfarm said...

They were doing the shots in the front, but I think with the last ones he did front and up behind my teeth like you're describing. They told me I was going to be numb until midnight, but it was all out of my system a couple hours later.

I think I'm going to have to go back in because my bite seems a little off, but I'm going to wait a few days in case things are a little swollen. Sigh...

Toni Toni Toni said...

I HATE the dentist. HATE.

tenthingsfarm said...

I don't really hate the guy - he's actually a really nice guy and he was really patient with me. The needles? HATE those. Not too crazy about that drill either. Nope. Don't like the needles or the drill.


Anonymous said...

Oh man! I hate tooth pain--especially when the dentist is working on me!

Yep--I go. Matter of fact, I had my 6 month checkup scheduled for this week, but I needed to change it as we are going out of town this weekend and I need all the time I can get.

I had a root canal back in August and was diagnosed with milk periodontitis, and that was enough to convince me to get one of those mega-expensive toothbrushes and keep my dental appointments. No fun. No fun at all!

Sheree said...

I have this problem and so does my 10 yr. old daughter (making dental visits a true nightmare....we found a solution though!! Actually one of the hygenists shared it with us. When you go back and sit in the dentists chair eat 3-5 tums. Yes, Tums (the antacid). Here is why it works according to the hygenist: Some peoples body's ph is very acidic causing the numbing medicine to be distributed faster thru your body. The novocaine (sp?) which is supposed to stay in one spot until your dental work is done starts moving away from where its put do to the high acid in your body. The tums temporarily neutralized the acid in your body (not your tummy but your whole body) allowing the novocaine to stay where its put for a longer period of time, hence you stay numb til they are done.
I don't know it it will work for you but its definately worth a try, kwim?


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