Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Good News....Kinda.

Well, ding dong the bitch is dead.

Yup, I finally had that asshole wisdom tooth pulled today. Apparently most of the price I was originally quoted was for anesthesia, and because I opted to have a local instead of general, we just managed to scrape affording it.

Of course, it was a bit of a shallow victory, because getting the son of a bitch removed was, I think, the second most painful experience of my life. (The first involved my left testicle and a cricket ball that was moving at roughly four times the speed of sound…you can use your imagination on that one).

At first I wasn’t all that nervous. I had two wisdom teeth removed just under two weeks ago…and yeah, it was painful, but not spectacularly so.

Well it turns out that the first dentist was an amateur. The oral surgeon was a Gestapo-trained interrogator.

I knew I was in trouble when I realized a Christian Rock station was being piped through the whole surgery. Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t have a problem with Christians…but Christian Rock freaks me out a little bit. I don’t know why. It’s just every time I see one of those ads on TV that shows the Christian Rock concerts, it looks like they’re all getting ready to hand out the Kool-Aid.


The surgeon tells me to open wide and starts injecting my gums with the world's biggest, shiniest needle. It hurts, it’s a very short, sharp but fairly low intensity pain. To be honest, after putting up with the toothache itself since mid-October, it’s an absolute walk in the park.

“Ok, we’ll give that a good long while to work while I go do something else.”

That’s something else that’s really weird. In England, if you go to see a dentist he’s in the room with you from start to finish. In America, there’s a really production-line mentality. From what I could tell he was working on at least three other patients besides me.

Anyway, he left me alone in the room, nervously eyeing the defibrillator machine in the corner for about twenty, maybe twenty-five minutes. While my toothache barely dimmed from the anesthetic, the entire right side of my tongue went numb. Then, just for some extra added awesomeness, because I couldn’t feel my tongue, but the back of my throat wasn’t numb, every time my tongue moved, even slightly, it would kick off my gag reflex.

I nearly threw up five times.

Finally, the bastard…I mean the ‘Oral Surgeon’ returned.

“How’s that working for ya?” He asked. “Numb yet?”

“My tongue is.” I replied. “But I can still feel the toothache.”

“Oh, I’m gonna give you some more anyway.” He said.

He went to it with his needle, apparently safe in the knowledge that I was numb enough not to feel it so he could be a little less careful.

He was wrong.

The next part was so horrifying I’m half convinced it’s a false memory. Maybe I saw it on a ‘Saw’ movie and the drugs they gave me are messing with my head.

Ok, picture this. Put your tongue on one of your back wisdom teeth. If your wisdom teeth are gone, put your tongue on your back molar. Now imagine that the front half of that tooth is almost completely gone (the half closest to the front of your mouth).

Now imagine a dentist injecting you through the decayed front half of that tooth, directly into the root. If you’re having trouble imagining that, imagine that the bottom right of your jaw is one great big papercut, and someone’s giving you a lemon juice, vinegar and salt mouthwash.

Basically, the part of my tooth that could make me yelp with pain from nothing more than a cold breath across it was stabbed with a gigantic needle.

I almost managed to force my entire body backwards through the chair. I actually pierced the leather of the chair with my fingernails. I'm not saying that as a joke. I checked when I was done...the arm rests where my hands where had three fingernail=shaped puncture marks on the right hand side

Now, did the dentist hear my gauze-muffled scream and wait a moment to let the anesthetic do its work?

Did he fuck, he injected me again in the same spot…THREE TIMES!

If I ever have to go back to that fucker I’m going to get in the chair, wait for him to get close and grab a handful of his testicles. Then, I’m going to look him in the eye and say “Now…we’re not going to hurt each other…are we?”

Then things just got nuts.

He pulled out what looked (and sounded) like an oversized Dremel rotary tool and, stopping occasionally to go at my tooth with what looked like a chisel, he started grinding on my tooth.

No shit, may I burn in hell if I’m exaggerating…but at one point, he shoved, and something went ‘ping’ out of my mouth. It bounced off my shoulder, hit the assistant in the forehead and then hit the floor with a very light thunk.

The dentist looked at me, looked at my shoulder, looked at his assistant, then looked at the floor…and then went back to punching me in the face.

Finally, he said he was ‘almost done’ and told me I just needed a ‘couple of stitches’.

Stitches…for a tooth extraction.

After that was done I sat up in my chair and put my hand to my jaw.

“Please don’t take this the wrong way, Doc.” I said. “But I really don’t like you very much.”

He laughed. “Don’t worry.” He said. “I get that a lot.”

“But I’m serious.” I said. “And one day I’ll have my vengeance upon you.”

Seriously, the dude was an asshole. What little kid wants to be a dentist? The kind that pull the legs of insects and go after an ant-hill with a magnifying glass, that’s who.

Anyway, when I had the last two removed, I was going to write a post about how if you needed a wisdom tooth extracted to not be too worried because it really isn't all that bad or painful.

After this one, I'd consider telling you to get a pair of pliers, chug a bottle of vodka and pull the bastard thing yourself because it would probably be less painful.

I suppose the moral to this story, if their is one, is that if you notice a cavity in a wisdom tooth, or part of it breaks off, go get it seen to, even if it's not hurting. It's going to be a LOT cheaper and a lot less painful that way.


Evanesce In 2008 said...

Glad it's done...
Love the picture.

rayray said...

ok, yea so i had to stop reading your post when you began talking about the use if a "dremel" type instrument.

several years back, i to had to have a wisdom tooth 'extracted'. more like chiseled out.
i lucked out though, in that my regular dentist was able to do the work.

the only dramatic part of my ordeal was that he described the tooth as "mush" when taking it out piece, by little piece.

i'm do for a cleaning come February, so i want to thank you so very much for describing in terrific horror your dental escapade.


Paulius said...

Actually, he used the Dremel thing, a pair of pliers and what can only be described as a saw/chisel hybrid.

Enjoy your cleaning Rayray!

PS Evan, up for some Halo sometime this week? Say Thursday, mid afternoon? I wanna try the campaign co-op

Terry Chandler said...

Thank goodness it's gone! I'm glad you were able to get it taken care of and now it can heal. I've had some humdinger toothaches myself (think abscesses, root canals, etc.) so I know how bad it is.
At least it's over!

Evanesce In 2008 said...

I've been watching for you on Xbox almost every day, hoping to run into you for a little Halo fun... or maybe Rock Band.

BTW, I rented RB2 for the kids to try out... we all love it. And oh yeah, I painted the guitar. It's pretty cool.