Friday, January 14, 2011


Scott's appointment followed mine.

It had been three years since we'd been to a dentist for a checkup and cleaning. Three years! Where does the time go? I didn't get out of there before paying $250 for my visit and booking an appointment to have my only two wisdom teeth out next month. There is nothing to look forward to in that prospect, is there? Two needles for freezing, an hour in the chair repeating a silent mantra to remain calm and relaxed while my mouth's stretched open and hands and tools dig around inside it, swelling and painkillers to follow, and finally two raw gashes where the teeth used to be. Oh, and the bill. Let's not forget the bill.
I left feeling sick to my stomach at the whole idea of that next appointment.
Every time I go to a dentist I refuse the x-rays they insist on, and every time they lecture me about how they can't do their job properly without seeing what's unseen in my mouth, and how the x-rays are the equivalent of 20 minutes in the sun and don't do you any harm, and half the time I end up letting them do it and hating myself for that because I don't believe a word of the "it's harmless" spiel but I have been learning over the years that if I'm going to pay professionals to do a job, I should also take their advice. So in spite of my misgivings I eventually agree reluctantly to the x-rays.
A dentist advised me 20 years ago to have the wisdom teeth removed, as they were crowding my other top teeth. I ignored him because they weren't causing obvious problems and why mess with something that seemed natural? In the years since, the overcrowding has pushed one of my front teeth out of alignment, which likely wouldn't have happened if I'd listened to the dentist and let him yank those wisdom teeth out.
So. I don't wanna listen, but I'm going to.