Thursday, January 20, 2011

      ( 11:24 PM ) teahouse

I went to the dentist yesterday for my quarterly appointment.

Yes, I said quarterly. I go to the dentist every 3 months!

Thanks to bad genes, I have pretty bad gum disease in my family. My grandmother had lost all of her teeth by age 30. My parents both have several false teeth.

I am determined to avoid this fate. Luckily, I have a really great dentist. But keeping my teeth and gums in good shape hasn't been easy.

When most people go to the dentist, they get that little napkin clipped around their neck. Then the nurse or hygienist comes in, gives them a little cup of water so they can rinse and spit into the little sink on the side at the end of the appointment. Then the dentist scrapes a little, pokes and prods, says, "It looks good. Come back in a year" or "You have a cavity; let's take care of it" or whatever.

When I go to the dentist, they have to change that little napkin because within 10 minutes, blood gets spattered all over it. And they don't want to scare the other patients who might be walking by, and who will think it's a grisly murder scene.

If I happen to look in the mirror, I see something that reminds me of that scene in the The Silence of the Lambs, when Hannibal Lecter is on his rampage.

Then the dentist says things like, "Ok, here's a suction tube, so you don't drown in your own blood" and "Let's refill that little cup of water for the 10th time so you can rinse" and "Nurse, please wipe down the blood that's dripping down the side of the sink."

And, "Let's try this experimental new laser treatment" or "Do you mind if our dental students come in and see what serious bone loss from gum disease looks like?"

And, "Please don't ever go on a reality show that requires you to live on a desert island; if you went more than 3 months without coming in here, your teeth would all fall out" and "I won't charge you for today's appointment, because I know you'll be back 3 more times this year."

But I always look on the bright side.

I got so many cavities as a kid that at some point, when every tooth had a filling, I didn't have to worry about getting any more.

And at least I get a lot of free toothbrushes!



okay, I confess I couldn't read the post other than the part about where you go every three months and your family had dental issues. Sorry I don't do well with dental issues, but I'm sure you will be fine and able to keep all your teeth and toothbrushes make fine gifts.
and now i have the shakes ;o{

By Blogger ... Paige, at 6:21 PM  

Wow definitely not a walk in the park. So even going to the quarterly dental appointments didn't help? I didn't have dental insurance for a long time while in hs/college so I only went when I thought about it or had the money.

It took awhile for my teeth to get healthier but they did eventually. Hopefully yours will be too.

By Blogger lissa, at 3:33 PM  

Yikes! I go to the dentist twice a year and it's traumatic enough for me.

And I almost always have bad experiences with the dentists I see in NY. The one in Astoria kept trying to push me into getting enamels so I can "look like a movie star."

The one in Sunnyside, who was trained in Eastern Europe, cleaned teeth like a butcher dismember a carcass.

But I'm glad to report, my dental hygienist in Maine is great.

By Blogger Ming the Merciless, at 12:20 PM  

Do you use ACT flouride mouth wash? I'm guessing your dentist has recommended it, but if not, you might want to try it. It's been the best thing for me.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:24 AM  

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THIRTYSOMETHING (!!) year old Asian American New Yorker, lawyer, amateur musician, curious girl taking a bite out of the Big Apple. Don't mess with me - I'm short and I look demure, but I carry a big purse. And I've just embarked on the journey of married life in Manhattan.

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