Thursday, September 13, 2007

What time is it?

I really like going to medical appointments and talking about my health. So much so that I'm afraid that my doctor will sense my weird enthusiasm and think I have Munchhausen syndrome. Dental appointments, I love a bit less. Actually a lot less. But I have this strange pride about my teeth and want to show up with the cleanest, whitest, most cavity-free teeth my dentist has ever had the privilege to examine. But despite my faithful brushing and flossing, that does not seem to be my dental destiny.

At my last dental cleaning, I was flinching a bit while the hygienist scraped off hunks of my gums. Noticing my discomfort she looked at me without a trace of compassion and said, "It hurts, hey? Well that's because you have gingivitis."
Gingivitis? Nooooo!

I laid in the chair, blinded with shame. I felt like someone had caught me eating my boogers. Or that my dentist and his staff were discussing the secret joy I took from reading Hollywood gossip in the waiting room.

Anyway, this time the dentist was dictating to his assistant and said "staining minimal" yes!, tartar minimal, yes! , and that my gums were looking very healthy. YES!!

I was feeling very proud of having aced my dental report card until he looked at my x-rays and told me I have four cavities - one that needs filling and three that we should "keep an eye on". Booo. That requires needles, drooling, and that weird burny tooth smell. There's also the potential for me to get so tense that tears well up in (and spill out of) my eyes while they're working on me. That's much more embarassing than gingivitis.


Paige said...

Awwww, don't feel too bad, even kids like me who grew up in the fluoride-water capital of Alberta (i.e., Calgary) have gingavitis.

Avey said...

ewww, last time I had a cavity filled the dentist said, "this is a very small cavity, so I'm not going to freeze it." And that was some of the worst pain I've ever felt in my life. What a jerk.
If it makes you feel any better, Heather has had something like 20 cavities between her teeth not to mention all of the regular ones...

Perpetualstudent said...

I don't like hygenists. I think they lie to you to make them feel better that they're just glorified teeth scrapers! My last hygenist told me I needed surgery to remove some extra skin from my wisdom teeth. Then the dentist told me I have perfect teeth and not to worry about it! Ah ha! Busted! (sorry about the cavities! blame your european friend who brought all the chocolate last year!)

Sarah said...

My dentist once offered to forgo the needle to fill a cavity....That one was pretty much a Hell No! I guess he though he would spare me the pain of the pinch...I'm pretty sure the pain of a drill would be a lot worse.

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