Implant. What sorts of images does that word conjure up for you?
An electric drill in your mouth?
Novocain or other local anesthetic?
General anesthetic/being put to sleep?
Maybe, YES to all of the above?
We weren’t poor growing up, but we did without a lot because any extra went to tuition to put my brother and I through Catholic schools (EL-HI). Orthodontia? No way! Regular exams? Of, course.
My left – upper – canine came in behind its predecessor and pushed it out of the way. All we could afford at the time was a quick visit to, I believe it was a “Dr. Beauchamp” dentist-in-the-box. A quick local injection, extraction and out of there. Braces? Not an option. And that tooth is still there and occasionally almost putting a hole in my tongue. Could I have it fixed today? Yes. Will I? No, I’m too thrifty/cheap to spend the money on something I’ve dealt with for fifty-plus years with few problems — other than all of those pictures in which you see me smiling but not showing any teeth.
Oooowww . . .
A year or two after I started teaching in Orange I needed my two lower wisdom teeth removed — the uppers had been removed without incident previously.
I went to my appointment about 4:00 pm. The oral surgeon said the operation — under local anesthetic — would take about twenty minutes total. Twenty minutes later he had the first, left, tooth out in pieces. An hour plus later he had the other out in a dozen or more pieces. Also, several additional shots of local — I can still here his voice through the haze of pain and time saying: “Local.” And the nurse replying: “What? Again?”
As some of my friends might tell you, I do not always do the sensible thing, but what I usually do or just want to do. With dry sockets and pain pills I went directly from the dentist to the YMCA and played in my volleyball league. I went home and slept and got up and went to work the next day.
A day off just because I was in pain? Surely, you jest.
Did this experience affect me?
Well, it was thirty years before I again went to the dentist.
It’s almost time to visit the dentist who did last week’s implant surgery and see how things are actually going on in my mouth. I’ll continue my implant story on the morrow, or perhaps later this week.
Oh, yeah — today’s the primary election here in SoCal and polls are open to 8:00 pm. If you want to have your voice counted, VOTE!
(to be continued — tomorrow: The Implant)