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Ow, my teeth!

22. June 2008

I hate dentists.
Okay, that’s not entirely fair, since I don’t necessarily hate dentists the people. I’m sure a lot of them are extremely lovely people once you’re out of their chair.
What I really hate is the feeling of helplessness when dealing with dentists.
When you go to an anything-else doctor, you have at least a sporting chance of watching what they’re doing. Also, they don’t hide their faces while they work on you.

With a regular doctor, I often already have a vague idea what’s wrong with me, and sometimes I can even hazard a guess as to how it’ll be fixed.

But not with dentists, oh no. All I know is I’m in tremendous pain that seems to move, and when I tell the lovely front desk asssistant that, she gives me an appointment for next week with one of those perfect white dentistry smiles that says “I floss twice every day. Do you ever floss? You don’t, do you?”

A week. In pain. Not slight pain. 6+ Nurofen-a-day pain. And you’re telling me to wait as if that was perfectly acceptable.

My GP takes walk-ins. because, you know. Most people don’t just decide to get sick some time in the near future, or feel like a social visit in a crammed doctor’s office.
I don’t know about you, but when I give my doc a call, 9 times out of 10 it’s because somethig is wrong.

Okay, so horrendous pain for a week. once you get to the dentist, she’ll fix you up right and dandy, won’t she?
Uh, that would be a no, too.
I tell her I’m in pain and that I assume it’s my blasted wisdom teeth. She takes one look at my mouth and says, “Yeah, that’s right. The wisdom teeth. They need to come out.”
Fantastic. So far, I’m on track. For a minute, nothing further happens. Then she takes another look in my mouth, this time with that pointy metal thing that makes you want to hold reeeaaaaally still in case they slip and give you a tongue piercing you didn’t ask for.
“Do you drink a lot of soft drinks,” she asks derisively.
“Not really.” As in, not even every week, nor necessarily once a fortnight.
“Sugar then.” Not a question.
“I guess.”
“You’ve got holes.” She says that in the same way I always imagine people to say “You’ve got crabs.”
“Oh,” I mumble. I’m not overly coherent with my mouth open and lying on my back, you see. Don’t take that the wrong way.
She takes a mini air-blowtorch from her arsenal and aims it at one tooth.
“Can you feel that,” she asks. “It should hurt a little.”
Me, tears forming from acute pain “Uh-huh.”
She turns off the air stream. Wow. And I thought I was in pain before!
She blows around my mouth some more adn tells her assistant some bingo numbers. I don’t think I win, since she keeps comparing other teeth to the painful one, nodding and mumbling to herself.

“Do you want me to clean your teeth,” she asks out of the blue.
“No thanks,” I say, wiping my eyes. I think I don’t want her scrubbing my gums, thankyouverymuch.
Wrong answer.
“What, you just came in here to check?”
Uh,yes? Seriously, do people come in here to get their teeth brushed? Isn’t that a tad expensive?
“You need to come back for your wisdom teeth,” she dismisses me and my pain. She doesn’t even prescribe painkillers.

That was last time I went to the dentist, about three months ago.
The pain is back.
This time, I’m not going to the Pointless One that told me I had a hole and then sent me packing again. I’m going to my friend Rock Chick’s dentist (I went with her not too long ago when she had some major surgery done to her), even though it’s over an hour for me to get there. He was nice and friendly and explained everything that he was doing as he was doing it. I like that.

My appointment is ina week’s time, the earliest they had. Oh joy. That bodes well.

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