Wednesday, March 21, 2007

That's The Way The Toothie Crumbles

I had a root canal on Tuesday. Have you ever had dreams about your teeth falling out? I have. And after Tuesday, I really wish I could choose which of my dreams become realities. Oddly enough, there was no falling-out warning. No pain - not even a twinge! And, technically, it didn't really "fall out." It was more of a "crumble" situation. A situation in which I was chewing on piece of candy Saturday afternoon, and suddenly, half my molar imploded. Evidently (or should I say, "evidentally") (sorry), sometimes 15-year-old fillings don't last more than 15 years. And sometimes, when those fillings decide it's time to go, they take half your tooth with them. The implosion was so impressive, my husband took pictures. But I won't post them. 'Cause they're really gross.

After I'd spent some time freaking out, I called 1-800-DENTIST. It really works! A very nice lady found an office in my area that was open on Saturdays. That office was in a run-down strip mall next to a lingerie shop. I know this because I called that office from the parking lot just outside the lingerie shop to tell them I couldn't make it.

On Tuesday, I went to my husband's dentist in Newport Beach. (It wasn't next to a lingerie shop.) They gave me 3 shots, and waited for my mouth to get numb. They started drilling, and I could feel it. Oh my stars and garters, could I feel it. They gave me 3 more shots, hit a nerve (NOT GOOD) and waited. Drilled again, and I could still feel it. They determined I have a "high tolerance" for pain medication. 4 more shots, and the drilling recommenced. Two hours after I arrived, they decided I needed a root canal, and sent me over to an endodontist in the same complex. While he was giving me the first of 5 more shots, his secretary came in to talk to me.

"Hun, just so you know, we're going to need a payment of $1088 before you leave the office today, 'mkay?"


After an hour of drilling and scraping, the endodontist informed me that my root canal was half finished, but because it was infected I'd have to wait a week for the antibiotic to take effect, and come back next week to complete it. With my face half paralyzed, I wandered back across the complex to the original dentist's office, where they told me that I needed to come back a week after my root canal was finished to get a crown put on. Did you know that a crown is a two-part process? That it takes two separate trips to the dentist to get it put on? 'Mkay.

I drove back to work, and stayed there until the numbness started to wear off. Then I went home, and was grumpy. Very, very grumpy. After attempting to watch some mindless television, I was convinced by my husband that I'd be better off asleep. He gently tucked me into bed, fluffing the pillows around me, and as he turned out the light, he said, sweetly:

"Goodnight, my poor little rotty mouth."

Just so you know, I'm still grumpy. 'Mkay?


Ameloblast said...

At least you won't need that much freezing next time. Hope things go well for your tooth...

Jannah said...

Oh Em,
My heart aches for you, and I'm pretty sure somewhere in the lingerie complex is a lawyer who (for the right fee) will fight the endodontist to recoup your money, it shouldn't be legal to demand money when you are under the influence of Novacaine and at their mercy, sound like extortion to me!

julie said...

Sounds horrible! I had an awful dentist experience at the end of last year and I walked out a whole heckuva lot poorer. No wonder people dread going to the dentist.

AzĂșcar said...

Yes, we know about all of the above. Joe had a root canal in December after putting it off for...


He was so loopy when he got out of round one that it made me giggle. He's the one that gets the teeth falling out dreams as well--I can't remember having even one.

Eurycleia said...

I'm sooooooo sorry, my little Lamb, and you are not a rotty mouth! You are not even a potty mouth!

I'll say little prayers to the dental God (who is a God over many things, I understand) for your teeth, and my heart goes out to you. If anyone I know has an excuse to be grumpy, it's you.

Love ya!

Sam said...

Yiiiiiiikkkkkkes! Awful! But I did have to chuckle about your high tolerance for pain medication because I was there to see it built! Em, did you hear that Gary's engaged?

Emmie said...

Thanks so much for all the sympathy, everyone! I very much appreciate it. I'm feeling better and less grumpy as of late.

Gary is WHAT?!? I must call you for details!!

Annette Lyon said...

Gary is WHAT is right!

And along the same lines, I received a certain wedding announcement I knew was coming, but was still rather odd to see.

But back to pain medications--Em, so sorry to hear that you too could outdo an elephant when it comes to them. With my migraines, I deal with the same thing.

When I informed my doctor that the Lortab he had prescribed hadn't touched my migraines, he declared, "Wow. I'm impressed."


~j. said...

Did you know previously that you require more pain medication than most? I run into this each time. "Okay, we're going to numb you now..."

"Okay, but I always need LOTS more than regular people. Remember?"

"Well, let's just try a little and see how it goes."


After seven more shots: "Wow, I guess you did need more!"

hm. I guess.

Emily said...

Can we hear the story about Gary and why it's surprising that he is engaged?

Emmie said...


Gary is a really good friend from high school. He's a fantastic guy and a great catch, but until a few months ago he hadn't yet met the right gal. We didn't even know he was dating anyone!