13 December 2005

a trip to the dentist

I have this irrational fear of the dentist. It stems from a bad experience as a kid, no need for the details, blah blah blah. But, I was doing ok with it until another bad experience in Dallas. I went again 3 years ago here in Stepford to a new one I had not seen, and she was really good. I had everything done, it was not so bad. But, I did not go again until now because the act of getting me there is Hell.

Anyway, I went today, and I am just now coherent again. UGH. I was in the chair for nearly 4 hours. The exam/procedure rooms overlook a park with trees and birds and squirrels - very bucolic, and the chairs have TVs over them and you can watch whatever you want. The goal of her practice is to be gentle and patient, and nothing should hurt. Got half my teeth cleaned and root-planed, and a couple of small cavities filled. But I am so sensitive to pain in my teeth that they have to numb my mouth to the point that my nose is numb. I sat there clenching the chair, body all tensed, in tears towards the end. But she's an awesome dentist, really good, patient, and did as much as possible today. I have to go back in two weeks to finish, I need to do that before my travel schedule for work kicks into high gear next year.

Well, I got home and tried to drink some water and it went all down my shirt. After two hours I managed to have a beer through a straw. Cigarette? Held on to it good, because my lips are like flubber. Food? Heh. Whipped cream, baby. Then some salami and cheese. It hurts to talk, I feel like I had a stroke. My skull hurts from clenching my jaw since I left the office.

Now, imagine how bad it would have been if she was not so skilled, did not have a good chairside manner, and did not create such a calming environment? She's damned good.