We have to stop meeting this way

We have to stop meeting this way. That’s what I told my dentist and his assistant.

I’d gone for years without needing any dental attention other than my regular cleaning. Then poof! A new cavity, right out of nowhere and two old, large fillings chipped, meaning two crowns.

The tooth under the last crown (tooth #31) took offense and the root decided to die on a Friday night — ouch ouch ouch — leading to a root canal. After the root canal is taken care of, it will be time for my next cleaning. When all is said and done, that will be 10 dental appointments in seven months. Whoa! Time flies whether you’re having fun or not.

I’ve been going to the dentist’s office often enough that I have a favorite parking space; it makes me happy to see it waiting for me.

Celebrate! Celebrate anything positive: Open parking spaces. Novocaine shots. (I wouldn’t have wanted to do any of this without them.)

Yes, it doesn’t take much to make me happy, and I’m okay with that.


Of all the nerve!

Of all the nerve!

My tooth’s nerve, that is; tooth #31. It’s dying. How inconsiderate . . . and painful.

Today was session 1 of 3 for a root canal. Drain, drill and fill (sessions 1, 2 and 3, respectively).

My favorite part? The “bullet,” as I call it. Some rubber thingie that you put between your teeth on the non-worked-on side to hold your mouth open. I bite down on mine hard (and I do mean hard), like “biting the bullet” in the western movies. Fortunately, the dentist didn’t keep a fifth of whiskey as an anesthetic.

Well, whoever invented that “bullet” deserves a Nobel prize in Dentistry. I’m voting for that person when I get on the Nobel Prize Committee. (That should be any day now.)

I yelped once, when the pain surprised me, and I felt silly. It was when the dentist was giving me my fifth — yes, fifth — Novocaine shot. The nerve he was looking for was not in the usual spot (I’m special), so the first two shots hardly had any effect. The next two shots didn’t do much more. That fifth one, whoa, it touched a nerve and I could feel it all the way up the side of my face. Yelping time. By the time it took effect, my ear was numb. (What? Can you repeat that?)

I had to be very careful not to chew up my tongue while the numbness was wearing off. I ordered some french fries from a drive-through window and went back to work. It took me an hour to eat that one order of french fries; slowly, carefully and only on the left side of my mouth. Cold french fries, not my favorite.

I chatted with my boss before the afternoon meeting. Told her that I was still quite numb, but if I started to drool, not to worry, as I’d use my three-quarter length sleeves to take care of it.