I’m sure that I’m not the only one out there that hates going to the dentist. I treat my dental appointments like I treat many a party invite that I get – say ‘Of COURSE I’ll be there’ six months in advance and when the day/appointment approaches suddenly find a lame excuse for not showing up. In the case of the dentist, why would I possibly want to go? They poke me with a sharp metal instrument. Wow. That’s fun, isn’t it?
So this week I had a routine dental cleaning. My wife constantly prods me with the same sharp metal instrument to make sure that I actually show up – and I guess the prodding got too much for even me
and I showed up. I will say that my appointments have gone much better since I’ve started flossing to an almost embarrassingly often degree. But still, there’s that scraping and poking and prodding with the insanely sharp metal instrument. That’s fun.
I immediately engaged my dental hygienist with some witty repartee. They love that. We were talking about how the imaging software for their X-ray machine was malfunctioning. Suddenly, I was part of their dental fraternity – laughing at the IT guys who came out to fix it and throwing out all sorts of dental/IT jokes. I’m sure the word ‘metamorphosis’ was even thrown out by me for some reason – probably because I was in a dental-poking kind of haze. It was fun.
X-ray time. My new friend shoved a piece of cardboard so far back in my mouth that she had to wash up to her elbows after she removed it from my teeth. That was fun.
On to the scrodding (combination of scraping and prodding) – it went acceptably well. Quick, fairly painless other than the few sharp jabs of pain when the scrodder would slip and insert itself deeply into my gums. That was fun. We even got through the part where they turn on the atomic-powered toothbrush to push a gravel-textured-orange-tasting paste all over my teeth. The only bad part of that is when they hit the two spots on the roof of my mouth that send my nerves through the stratosphere. That is fun, too.
So we get all done, and everything is “fine”. Whatever that means. But then my friendly dental hygienist who I’ve completely bonded with at this point shows me on the X-rays that one tooth was showing a dark round hole. But the other X-ray wasn’t showing it in the same tooth. I said, of course, “Maybe it’s the imaging software screwing up.” She was having none of that – time to call in Mr. Big Pants to take a look. This will be fun.
He comes in, takes one look at the X-rays, scrods my tooth for a second, pulls back and says: “You have definitely got some external resorption there.” I said, “What’s external absorption?” “RESORPTION…when the ligament holding the tooth is dying.” I said, “So what’s the solution for my electoral resumption?”
He was getting annoyed.
I continued “Maybe it’s just your crappy imaging software….”
He was getting annoyed. Further.
I said ‘Well, if it’s external and not internal then just scrape the darn thing off and let’s get on with life.”
He was amazingly calm.
Calmly, he says “We’ll basically just wait until it starts bothering you and then we’ll yank it out of your head faster than a knife fight in a phone booth” (or words to that effect).
He then called in the other dentist at the place so that she could take a look and treat my mouth like the respository of dental knowledge that it had become. She scrodded some more and said, and this IS a direct quote ‘We’ve really got some external resorption going on there – you don’t see that too often.”
As I left I said to my wife (who was also there for her appointment): “Crap – I’ve got electrical rejection”. She looked at me askance (as only she can).
I walked by the receptionist and she asked me how it went. I said: “Not well, I’ve got existing rejection”. Another askance look.
I walked into work and someone asked how it went. I said “It’s not looking good – we have some serious external reintroduction going on in here.” Askanceness.
So that was it. I’m just sitting here waiting for my tooth to slowly die from the existing reintroduction that’s killing the ligament.
This is fun.