Monday, July 07, 2008

Anti-Dentite

I did something this afternoon that I haven't done for eight years. I went to the dentist for a routine cleaning and checkup.

I realize that some of you will find it scandalous that I went so long without a checkup. Even more scandalous? It had been six years between that visit and the one before it. I can even remember the logic behind each visit: I figured I should go before we left Panama City for, allegedly, Taos, because I didn't know when I'd have the money, time, or inclination to go again. Who knows how long it had been before that one. Six years later, I went when I was planning my second pregnancy. And now, eight years later, I went because I took all my kids a few weeks ago and thought "Hey, I haven't been to the dentist since before Joshua was conceived, and he's seven!"

I don't hate the dentist or anything. I just am not a maintenance kind of girl. I am bad about not getting the oil changed in my car until it's been three times as long as recommended. I never go to the doctor unless I'm really, really sick. Or pregnant, which is a more frequent occurance. And I never think to go to the dentist because I never have any problems with my teeth.

Or at least, I never used to. That's right...duh DUH duuuuh...I have a cavity. Gasp! I have never had a cavity in any of my permanent teeth! But now I have a tiny one in the grinding surface of my third molar on the upper right side. They sprung it on me right at the end, too! After all the scraping. Oh, the scraping. It went on so long and was so disgusting and mildly painful. My mind drfted to that genius who is running the ads for something called "sedation dentistry." Before, I scoffed at the pansies who would need such a thing, but now...

It's not that I'm now scared of the dentist. It's just so unpleasant, with the tiny metal gaffs and the holding your mouth wide open for upwards of half an hour at a time, and the unfortunate timing of opening your eyes just as the hygenist's bloodstained latex hand is passing in front of them. And the bib. Oh my god, the bib! That they wipe the crud from the little hooks on. There hasn't been any advance in dental technology since the advent of the bib? Really?

It wasn't scary, and it wasn't even very painful. It was just. So. Gross. Thank goodness I don't have to go back for at least six years!

6 comments:

Secret Agent Mom said...

I haven't been for nine years, and I reckon I have at least four more months before they all fall out of my depleted gums. Then I get to start a jug band!

Stacey Greenberg said...

dude i had all of my metal fillings replaced last year--VOLUNTARILY! amazing what a flat screen TV and massage chair will make you do...

Stephanie said...

I made it through my whole twenties without a visit to the dentist. Then I got insurance around the time I turned thirty, and it's been twice a year ever since. I think the reason I go regularly is because I have good teeth and it's nice to hear a dentist say that twice a year. It's all about my ego, really.

Chip said...

Dude, all KINDS of bad stuff can happen from bad dental hygiene. The bacteria that lives there can cause all sorts of problems-- cardiac infections, brain abcesses... you name it.

I was like Steph, and avoided the dentist for most of my twenties. I had really bad gums when I first went back. Now I go twice a year and things are great. Still haven't had any cavities.

Katherine said...

it won't be so gross if you go more often! oh how i wish my only tooth problems were that i needed to go to the dentist twice a year. *sigh*

Beverly said...

you better go more often...cause you want to keep your pretty smile...I wish I had your smile...really