Despite the fact that I have the world's nicest and most gentle dentist, the first thing on my mind as my biannual cleaning approached was that dentist song from Little Shop of Horrors. If the sound of dental instruments makes your skin crawl (as it does mine), might I suggest you don't Google that song and watch it on YouTube to refresh your memory of it? That is a memory that need not be refreshed. Trust me. See?
GAH! Sorry about that. I couldn't help myself.
My dentist is nothing like that. When I first went to see her last October (after a seven year break of no dentist appointments at all, such is my fear of dentists), she wasn't at all judgy or lecturey (those are totally words, shut up). Hell, she all but followed me home she was so in love with me and my teeth and how awesome they were.
This time started out just as smooth. I remembered to take a good dose of Xanax before the cleaning so as not to scar the poor dental hygienist with the non-stop full-body clenching that was the highlight of my last cleaning. (THE SCRAPING NOISE. I cannot deal with the scraping noise.)
But towards the end, it went a bit downhill. I mentioned that I had been having a bit more sensitivity in one tooth than normal - mostly to cold, but also to pressure/chewing. The pain-level I was describing wasn't concerning them, but they did a few cursory tests like blowing cool air on one tooth at a time, and when they hit the sensitive one I all but FLEW out of the chair. The dentist and hygienist both disagreed with my assessment of "sensitivity" and put that right in the "pain" camp. And that was "a lot more than a four on the pain scale of 1 to 10". Who knew? Anyway, after some x-rays and a few other tests it seems I have a fractured tooth. Delightful.
Oddly, the level-one fix for this is not to do anything to the fractured tooth at all, but to grind down the opposing tooth so that it doesn't put pressure on the fractured one when I chew. My question: don't I need the pointy bits on that opposing tooth? Aren't those important? It would seem not, as she sanded off what felt like half the tooth. I go back in a week for a reevaluation to see if we need to do the level-two fix, which would be a crown on the tooth. Just what I need - more dentist appointments.
Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go look at lolcats or something to get the images from the Little Shop of Horrors dentist out of my head. Gah.
P.S. Anyone who lives in Chicago and is looking for a dentist, Dr. Lani Basco is made of all awesome things. Seriously.