Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The "You Gotta Be Kiddin' Me" Dental Foray

First off, tracked food today and it was pretty good - four points over my goal of 31.  Also, with the dentist appointment today after work, I didn't get in my workout.  However, I did make the 2500 Nike fuel point goal though by 8pm - which is unusual for me if I haven't exercised.

Work was crazy busy and the day flew by very quickly.  I was so hungry by the time I ate lunch that I think everything tasted so much better simply due to hunger.  

THE APPOINTMENT - Seriously, how did you think this was going to go?
After work was the dreaded dentist appointment.  Even though I should have been calm (it's not called "sedation dentistry" for nothing, right?) I was still a bit stressed.  I was so stressed apparently that I earned myself not one, but TWO cold sores over night.  I haven't had a cold sore since like 2010!  Oh wait, right around the time I had to go to the dentist last time.  Coincidence?  I think not.

The Waiting Room
Very nice.  There were bottles of water and juice available in a fridge and some really comfy-looking chairs.  I say "comfy-looking" because there was no time to sit - I was called back before I got the water bottle opened.  Well, poo, I didn't even get to play a level of Candy Crush.  What's up with that?

The Visit
As it turned out though, I didn't even get a cleaning today - only an exam and a crap-ton of X-rays.  You'd think that's no big deal as far as pain goes, right?  But no, that stuff is just another part of the whole dental experience that I despise.  

The first x-ray was with a machine that circled around my face - no pain there, just a bit awkward the way you stand there and put your teeth in this plastic groove/stand thing and rest your chin on another plastic thing.  

Not my teeth, but this is the result of the "circle" xray machine
X-rays times a gazillion
After that, we started this whole other series of x-rays in the chair.  I'm not sure why, maybe the big circle one wasn't good enough.  So, instead of those little white plastic-feeling deals they used to use for x-rays, you know, the ones that dig into the roof of your mouth and feel like the other side is slicing off your tongue at the lower gum line ?  Well now, they have this thick (about 1/4 inch) L-shaped (or maybe a "T") device that gets literally wedged in you mouth while you're being told to bite down.  Bite down?  How?!?!  You just wedged the giant freaking piece of plastic into my mouth!  It was all so awkward and extremely uncomfortable.  It's like they turned the knife around and instead of the blade you get the handle.  

Adding Injury
Oh and I even got bonked in the head by the tech moving around the stupid x-ray machine.  Nice.

Dentist oh sweet dentist
Thankfully this procedure is interrupted by the dentist who comes in and wants to go ahead and do the examination because she has an appointment or something to go to.  Sure, I said, thankful for the interruption.  Her part of this experience was actually the least painful though.  She just poked each tooth and gave the tech a description to write down in my record.  This part was over way too soon.  She also asked if I had any questions.  I did, but I couldn't recall for the life of me what they were.  I asked a couple of the stupid questions that invaded my brain, but those weren't the ones I was thinking of before I got there.

Next up, the tech (who btw, was filling in for someone and was a bit unfamiliar with ...a lot) needed some un-sedated baseline vitals.  I am not kidding, it took like 10 minutes to get my blood pressure.  Not because I moved or anything, but because the cuff wasn't inflating.  She even tried the old-fashioned method and guess what?  Wouldn't inflate.  Hmmmmm, operator error possibly?  

More X-rays
After that, we're back to where we left off with the x-rays.  Ugghhh, will this ever be over?!?  Are we taking a picture of every stinkin' tooth?  Well, I would have wished the x-rays could've gone on longer if I'd know what was next.  The probe.  Yep, the part where they take a very sharp pointy metal instrument and jam it into your gum line at every single tooth.  I really don't know if that's what they're really doing, but it certainly feels like it.  343 333 242 and on and on and on.  There were probably 6-8 times where I winced from the pain.  Not just the "oooh I flossed too deep" pain, no, this was "someone just electrocuted my face for half a second" sort of pain.  Almost like a brain freeze but sooooooo much sharper  ...and pointy-er.  

Now, to be completely honest, she did ask if I wanted a topical anesthetic before we started.  I should've said yes!  My buddy Hindsight is screaming YES loudly in my face right now as I type.  Someone please remind me I said that next time I mention the dentist office, ok?  Anyway, I chose to wait and see.  Wait a sec, did I just type "next time" and "dentist office" in the same sentence?  Sick.

Well, after an hour and 45 minutes, I was finally done.  Talked a bit with the receptionist about setting up a follow-up plan.  We're going to see how much of what they want to to is covered by insurance.  All the stuff they want to do may require a second mortgage...

So, if you were to ask me, "Kris, are you worried about the "next time"?"

You betcha.  

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