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A toothy tale

January 8, 2021

With all the excitement south of the border, I seem to have left you all wondering what happened on Tuesday.

Well, it was a cold, wet, miserable day, which somehow seemed appropriate. As I was going to be walking from the ferry to the dentist’s office I had to dig out my seldom used umbrella.

Arriving at the office I confirmed that, yes, I had taken the online Covid survey before setting off. I was then asked to lean forward to have my temperature taken, first on my forehead, then on my wrist. Both attempts confirmed that I was either dead or still frozen from my walk. Used the toilet, warmed up and tried again: 36.6 degrees, which is apparently just fine. (Being now close to ancient, I still think in Fahrenheit, so anything other than 98.6 means nothing to me.)

Sat down with my book to wait and was eventually summoned.

I don’t think I’ve mentioned this before, but the dentist in town has the most incredibly soothing voice. He talked me through what the procedure would involve (freezing, extraction of tooth, excavation of root). Just to keep things straight in my mind, I ran through my understanding of how events would unfold: extraction today, appointment on the island tomorrow to have the retainer that fit over all my upper teeth (with a fake tooth in the middle) tomorrow. He said they could fix me up with a false tooth before I left, which was good, I guess.

Then his assistant put a pair of sunglasses over my eyes to protect them from the bright light – as if I wasn’t going to have my eyes firmly shut throughout.

The freezing – the needle – was my first concern. I’ve had bad experiences with that before. I needn’t have worried. I really didn’t feel a thing.

Nor did I feel a thing as the tooth was pulled out and nothing more than a scraping sensation as the root was removed. Then whatever they use to replace and encourage bone growth was inserted. (I’m sure there’s a name for this, but if there is I’ve forgotten.) Then it was sutured. Then he inserted a small retainer with a fake tooth. Then I got a mirror. Pretty good.

He showed me the tooth which had been removed and asked if I wanted to keep it. I have to say it looked like a pretty diseased little thing. I’m surprised it hadn’t just broken off with no warning much earlier. I told him that, as I was pretty sure the tooth fairy wasn’t going to stick $20 under my pillow, I’d pass on keeping it.

Once again I attempted to confirm that the next day I would be going to the dentist on the island to have the full retainer installed. No, he told me. He’d figured out how to sort it with a much smaller retainer, the one he’d just inserted, so no need to see me on the island until next week when the sutures are removed. So, not a full upper retainer, just this small thing? Bonus.

A prescription for pain killers was written and faxed to the island pharmacy.

I pulled out my credit card, dinged it for $1110 (ouch!) and headed off into the wind and the rain.

Back on the island I went straight to the pharmacy to pick up the pain killers, then headed home and waited. The freezing wore off. I waited. Nope. No pain to kill. None. At all. Pretty bloody good.

Read the instructions for the retainer. Another bonus! I did not, as I had feared, have to remove and soak it overnight when I went to bed. I was supposed to sleep with it in. I would not have to wake up every morning for the next several months with no front tooth. Hurrah.

I do need to remove it for ninety minutes a day – the three thirty minutes each day when I have to wait after rinsing with the medicinal mouthwash before anything can cross my lips. That is what I am doing as I write and I have to say it does feel weird when my tongue finds the gap at the front, but ninety minutes a day isn’t so bad. Better than having to wake up every morning with no front tooth.

I am not going to do a gap toothed selfie, but you can have a pic of the retainer.

There you go.

If you want a picture of me grinning, you can have this one.

On which note, I need to get ready to go for a walk with Georgie. (Oh, and Joe.)

From → Blog

One Comment
  1. krysross permalink

    Am so glad it’s going better than you expected. Let’s hope that’s a trend.

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