Saturday, April 23, 2005

Tooth Extraction

Today’s blog won’t really fit in with the normal purpose of my blog but hey I’m not really that serious of a guy so I need to let my blog lighten up once in a while too!

So this week I visited the dentist three times. Not very exciting for anyone! The first appointment was just for a couple of cavities. The second for two more cavities and a wisdom tooth extraction. And the third to make sure the empty wisdom hole was healing properly.

Now I’ve known since my last visit to the dentist 13 years ago that something was eventually going to have to go down with my wisdom teeth but I was not at all interested. At the time I was playing the trumpet quite seriously and had heard of other trumpet players who had their wisdom teeth out and had a nerve that runs through the lip cut during the process. Not an enticing story for a guy that’s hoping to study an instrument whose primary sound producer is the lip! I thought this was a great excuse. But probably the real excuse was that I was just scared. When it comes to the dentist, somehow TV or movies or friends stories have managed to scare the crap out of us . . . or me.

During my first visit when my two fillings were being put in the assistant put the mirror down for me to see what was going on. Anyone want to watch their teeth get drilled down and needles go into their mouth???? Well anyway I did. I thought it might help me get over the fear. My Dad has never been good with blood so I’m always trying to make sure that’s a fear I don’t develop. It was actually pretty cool to watch. At this point in my life I’m quite interested in learning stuff and I’ve always wanted to know how things work so watching the filling go in was kinda cool. It was like I was watching it on the operation show or something.

Two days later I returned to get two more fillings and that darn wisdom tooth out. I decided before I went that I would watch it all again if I could. The dentist didn’t seem to mind so I pulled down the mirror and watched and you know it wasn’t that bad. There was some blood, and he had to drill into my bone to get it out but it really wasn’t that bad. In fact I laughed at one point. The dentist had his plier like tool on my tooth trying to pull it out and it wasn’t coming. He kept pulling but nothing. He started to try and loosen the tooth by rotating the tool like a joystick in circles while pulling. Before he started this ‘move’ he said to me, “I’m going to add a little pressure to your face here.” It’s not like I could say, “No, I’d rather you just do it without the extra pressure.” So on and on he went. For some reason this just struck me as funny. I pictured what the view would be like if there was a camera above us. I think it would have looked like some kind of torture scene from the show 24 or something. Except they had me so frozen that instead of it being torture it was just funny.

I left the dentist thinking, “Why was I so afraid of this? Why do people make such a big deal about wisdom teeth? It wasn’t that bad at all. In fact it was even funny at one point.” About three hours later the freezing had worn off and I was lying on the couch in pain in need of the prescribed Tylenol 3’s with Codine! That’s when I realized what all the complaining was about. It was just a constant aching pain that somehow passed through my whole body. I never took the Tylenol 3’s. I’m not interested. I’m not even interested in the extra strength Tylenol’s that I am taking but I need to sleep and not be miserable so I went for it.

So it is two and a half days later as I write this and it still hurts. I can still tell when the Tylenol is wearing off and that makes me mad. I hate that drugs are controlling how I feel. I understand that they are necessary which is why I’m not a Nazi about it but I try to avoid them when possible.

This all made me wonder about how much I could endure pain. I watch and read stories about people who get shot or stabbed or fall off a cliff and break a limb and then they do something else incredible like get away from their captors or walk 20 kilometers before they receive any help. I know these are just stories but this kind of stuff does happen and I can’t help but wonder if I would make it through one of those situations. I can’t even deal with a tooth extraction without two extra strength Tylenol’s every four hours!!



benny harker 5/12/2006 9:58 AM  

hey dude :) found this page on google after looking for tooth extraction stories...

i had one out yesterday, i got the morning off work and jeez... my dentist was using some huge pliers man... that didn't really hurt except she kept catching my chin and bits of facial hair in the pliers too... yowz.

tis out now, i asked if i could keep the tooth itself as i was surprised at the size of the thing. weird ain't it?

now i'm on that wait while the wound heals over... the aching pain is slowly subsiding but i still can't eat properly.

hope you're well mate, nice blog btw!

benny -x-


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