Something for ME

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by GoingNorth, Feb 19, 2010.

  1. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    Well, I don't think most people would be excited about dental work, especially people like me who are dental wimps and need a bunch of work done on their bottom teeth (my upper teeth live on the bathroom counter at night).

    It all started with one cracked molar that became infected. That had to come out on an emergency basis. I decided to dip into savings and have all the rest of my bottom teeth cleaned up--get rid of the decay and staining, resin inlay fillings, the works. All my front teeth are now done...

    Soooo...I made another appointment for me and me only. I got tired of looking at my nice new teeth under a head of drab brown, graying hair...

    I got my hair colored a couple of shades lighter, and then had foil highlights done. I've always had a lot of red in my hair, and a lot of the highlights came up strawberry blonde, but if I do say so myself; I'm quite pleased with how my hair came out.

    It's funny. I'm so "un-vain" that I'll go to WalMart in sweats, but I really do feel better about myself. My teeth HAD to be worked on, but I didn't have to have all the restorative work done; I had that done to make them look perfect (OK, still crooked, but normal)

    For those of you afraid to go to the dentist--reconsider. I neglected my teeth for years and years due to a combination of financial issues and dental phobia.

    Dentistry has come a LONG way. They use a topical so the needles don't really hurt, and they can block parts of the jaw so you don't need needles for each tooth. The worst of it is listening to the dratted DRILL and the taste of the stuff they use for the resin.

    I have to go in to get the last of the bottom teeth restored, a crown replaced, and a permanent reline of my upper plate done. I'm not at all worried about it. Used to be I had to take sedatives to get into the office, and work had to be done under a general anesthetic.

    And trust me, it's a lot cheaper to fix problems as they arise than it is to let them get to the point I had let my teeth get to.

    So...that's what I've been doing for myself
  2. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    Good. I am glad you did something for yourself. I am a dentist hater, however I go regularly as I once did not go to the dentist for 2 yrs. The cleanings after that were torture. I had so much plaque I had to have 2 separate cleanings of an hour each. that taught me.

    For me it is not the pain of going to the dentist, it is the sounds and smells. The grinding and the dust, ewwwww.
  3. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    I got lucky on the cleanings--my dentist scaled the roots as he went along since I was already numb.

    Once all the work is done, I get to have a "normal" cleaning and polishing done. The only difference for me is that I'll probably have to have my teeth cleaned more often than once year because I build up tartar like crazy.
  4. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    My dental phobia dates back to early childhood when I was strapped to a "papoose board" in order to have a tooth pulled.

    I also date back to before they worked on baby teeth. If anything went wrong with milk teeth, they just yanked them out.
  5. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I hate the noise and the smells, too.
  6. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I hate everything about the dentist. EVERYTHING. My childhood dentist once drilled into my gum for spite. He never numbed you fully. I had no idea you could be numbed fully until I was a teen. I also saw him hit a kid, and he threatened me many times, all too quietly for parents to hear. It was common to hear kids screaming while you waited, or just sobbing.

    But you are correct that it is easier to have the work done regularly. My dad went over 10 YEARS with-o a cleaning and it was an expensive nightmare.

    I am glad you did something for YOU. You deserve it!
  7. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    My dentist does work on children, but only if they are able to follow instructions and don't require restraining or sedation beyond nitrous oxide.

    He refers peds pts like that to a pediatric dentist in another town who is licensed and set up to use general anesthesia, which he is not.

    I casually asked about how they work on children these days and found out that the board was still in use, especially at the bigger practices where they do a lot of Medicaid work.

    He also said some of those clinics did a lot of work that didn't need doing so they could bill it out.
  8. ML

    ML Guest

    I am soo proud of you for doing this for yourself. I bet you look amazing. Way to go GN!
  9. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Way To Go!!! You will be so happy you had this dental work done.
    It is so good for you now, and in the long run.
    The hair sounds fun!
    What a pick-me-up!
  10. Congrats GN!

    This is simply awesome. The benefits of taking care of yourself in this way are way beyond the initial cost. Your hair sounds beautiful!

  11. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    Well, I definitely like my teeth. I cracked the dentist up by getting up after the last visit, going to the mirror, looking at my teeth, and going "Wow! Cool!"

    The hair I'm still getting used to. I like it, but it keeps catching me unawares in the mirror.

    The salon has a computerized system that records exactly how much of which colors were blended to get the exact colors, so it won't be a guessing game when I go in for a touch-up.
  12. Andy

    Andy Active Member


    The dentist is also my least favorite medical person to visit. I used the nitrous oxide for cleanings for a few years. My dentist "caters to cowards". I would much rather have work done on my teeth than a cleaning

    For work, we can listen to a CD. I usually bring in my own (Celtic flutes or other music that I can float away to).

    Nitrous oxide was what pushed difficult child into the depth of his anxiety. He was going down hill that summer and no one knew why. Then, he had a dental appointment and they put the gas mask on him. "I feel weird" he said to which I replied, "Yes, you do feel weird on this - it is o.k." "No, I can't do this" and he sat up pulling the mask off. He was very very scared and begged to go home but I made the Mommy call of if we left getting him back in that chair would be impossible. I convinced him to continue without the gas. He did great! He was having a tooth pull and as it is common, the bleeding took a little longer to stop than we would have liked. That also scared him.

    This experience brought about the start of his panic attacks. He had his first one the next day calling me home from work.

    I sometimes wonder if I should have brought him home but I think I did the right thing. If the gas was what contributed to his panic attacks (or atleast brought them to the forefront sooner since I think in hind sight he was heading there anyway) it was already too late. However, he states the bleeding of the teeth is what really bothered him.

    difficult child has done great in the dentist chair since then with both cleaning/exams and work without the nitrous.
  13. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    I also don't like NO2 sedation because it makes me feel so weird and disconnected. I actually get panicky on the stuff, which is why I wound up having work done under IV anesthesia.

    Now, I just tough it out like a big girl, LoL
  14. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    Nitrous oxide made me severly claustrophobic. I tried it once and never again. Andy, I completely understand your son's anxiety- for me it wasn't the gas, it was feeling trapped by the mask.

    For years the periodontist had to use novacaine when I was getting my teeth cleaned, then another dentist prescribed a miracle toothpaste (plus cleanings every 3 months) that has made all the difference. No nitrous. No novacaine.

    Another tip--- there is novacaine with- and WITHOUT- adrenaline. I didn't know that until I was well into my 30's. That adrenaline "rush" had me going through the roof but I just figured it was "dentist anxiety." Once I knew to ask for the kind without adrenaline I didn't get the heartbeat "rush" and it was much better.

    GN, I'm so pleased for you that you are nurturing yourself. You go, girl! :wine:

  15. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    Yeah, I have the problem with the "adrenaline" in dental anesthesia. I told my dentist that local anesthesia gave me the shakes and a racing heartbeat.

    He said that many anesthesias had the adrenaline mixed in as it cuts down on bleeding. He used a different anesthesia and I had no problem with it at all.

    Suz, I figure after all this time, and after the life I've lived, well...I deserve it. Not only that; I am WORTH it.

    So far so good as they say.
  16. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    You are absolutely right!

  17. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    Yes GN, You are WORTH it!

    It is truly amazing how far dentistry has come in patient comfort. We just have to remember to talk to the dentist if something isn't working like we want it to and they may just have another option.