Several years ago, my wisdom teeth were giving me all kinds of grief.
Since I was a young college student who made about 7k a year, I didn’t have the cash to get those damn teeth cut out of my head. My mom gave me a trip to the dentist as a birthday present and off I went to this hillbilly up in Missouri since he was cheap.
Now, I had been informed that if I wanted to be sedated then the dentist required that I have a consult with him the day prior to the tooth killin’ but since the office was about four hours from my house…well, that wasn’t an option. I didn’t really want to be knocked out anyway; I just wanted the gas.
Tucker, his mom and I made the drive up to Missouri [Tucker and I were just dating at the time so how cool of his mom, right?] and when we got into the office, I noticed a note on the receptionist desk saying that the doctor would not be seeing patients after that week since he was retiring.
I SHOULD have gotten a freaking clue and realized that this guy was older than dirt but I was ready to get my crumbling wisdom teeth [I guess the wisdom was all used up?] out of my mouth.
Into the back I went and before I knew it, I was sitting in this outdated dentist chair, surrounded by really bad wood paneling.
I asked the assistant if they had my gas since I hadn’t noticed the tanks anywhere in the tiny, cramped room.
“If you wanted to be sedated then you should have scheduled a consult.”
“Um…I don’t want to be sedated. It’s just that I’ve never had a shot at the dentist without the gas.”
The old woman patted my hand and gave me an obnoxious “you’re making a mountain out of a mole hill” look and told me that I would be just fine.
Now, instead of the horrible wood paneling, all I could focus on was the tray of crazy, metal torture devices that were sitting on the dinged tray in front of me.
I could handle this. I could. I tried to slow my breathing. I tried to quit my hands from shaking. I really did try.
And then Methuselah entered the tiny room and I pretty much lost it.
Dude’s hands were shaking worse than mine.
He was kind in a grandfatherly way and he got down to business.
I don’t remember him numbing my mouth prior to him sticking me with the needle but I DO remember the needle feeling like it was going into my fucking jaw bone.
I shook and a couple of tears ran down my cheek and the guy was oblivious. I’m pretty sure that he was thinking about retirement and not the chick who was sitting in his dentist chair.
A while later, Tucker, Tucker’s mom and I all drove back to Arkansas.
I was still shaken and rather pissed about how the whole shot thing had been handled but it was over and done with and my teeth were gone and that was the point of it all.
It wasn’t until several months later that I realized that the guy had severely chipped one of the adjacent teeth and I ended up having to have a root canal and a crown.
The point of all of that is that I used to like the dentist. Used to. I actually looked forward to it and laughed at the people who were phobic of dentists. Silly people.
I found a good dentist in Florida who I loved and he helped me with some of the fear – the fact that he was hot didn’t hurt the healing process.
And today, I went to a new dentist – a chick.
This is the first female dentist I’ve ever encountered and I think I love her. Two years of no dentist attention and two kids in as many years can do a hell of a number on your teeth.
I got my gas [woo hoo!] and after next Tuesday, I’ll be back to visits every six months with no signs of needles.
Can someone please tell me why the syringes at dentists’ offices haven’t caught up with the times and why they still use those huge ass metal contraptions?