15 November, 2012

Yay teeth!

Round about month 8 (month 7? Maybe month 9) of my pregnancy a chunk of my wisdom tooth fell out of my mouth. That was unusual. It had been sore for a while, but nothing out of the ordinary for wisdom teeth pushing in and rearranging my other teeth. I had thought it was strange how very sharp it was the whole time, but then that sharp chunk fell out and the soreness stopped too. Wow. Interesting. Did I see a dentist? Nope.

I figured I would go to the dentist and get it checked out. Maybe have the crown repaired. Eventually. Now, me waiting to see a dentist for 3-4 months is not that strange when you take into account I last saw a dentist when I was 17 or so. That's right, 13 years without any dental catastrophes. Plus not only had my tooth, or what was left of it, stopped hurting but there was no sign of infection or any other issues. Aside from everything I ate was now getting stuck in there. That was annoying. Tasted bad as well. This is to be expected when you have food essentially digesting in your mouth. Ew. I brushed my teeth a whole lot more often (say, 5-6 times a day, instead of 2-3. Yes! I brush my teeth! Surprising, given this event.)

Last Tuesday I was munching on my lunch (black beans and rice! Boriqua soul food.) and it was suddenly extra crunchy. The rest of my tooth had fallen out. Well, I think it was the rest of my tooth, I didn't have the other part on hand to match it up. I  mentioned it to my mom and then she mentioned it to my Dad who called my the next day to scold/implore me regarding seeing a dentist. Right now. Because it is important. I should see one. Could be dangerous. I need to see one now. etc. He also offered to pay whatever my insurance did not cover (yay! Also, yes, I have dental insurance and still had not seen a dentist. In my defense ... there isn't one. I should have seen the dentist months ago. I am a lazy coward. In regards to dentists.) I googled and compared and narrowed it down to two dentists, neither of which are in-network (of course! hahaha) and Milt happened to know one personally and liked him, so I scheduled the appointment. After getting a 'worst case scenario' price quote, assuming my insurance completely refused to pay, so I could be sure to have the amount on hand.

I went in Monday afternoon and the dentist and staff are super nice and I have a very interesting mouth. Part one, the tooth that fell out (right maxillary third molar) actually just snapped off at the gumline, leaving behind the root. That baby needs to come out now. Part two, my left maxilary third molar has a massive cavity on the cheek side right at the gumline, which the dentist suspects is what happened with the first one. That baby also needs to go. It is technically repairable but #1 the repair is very difficult, and #2 removing it will even out the pressure on the rest of my teeth. I also have a minor cavity on another tooth that will be a quick repair; after 3 kids in 5 years and no professional dental care in 13 years, that is pretty darn good. Part three, many of my teeth show calcification, a symptom of tooth grinding/clenching, which normally would be corrected with a root canal but I have no issues, the teeth are strong (all my teeth are in great shape. Except for the two rotted ones. Obviously.) so no root canal. Part four, I have an additional wisdom tooth, a right mandibular 4th molar. It is teardrop shaped, appears to be locked into the 3rd molar (which is good, as it will keep the molar from drifting up due to the absence of the tooth above it) and it also appears to be hooked into the main nerve in my jaw. So while normally this would prompt an extraction, he doesn't even want to tough it unless absolutely needed, as removing it would be messy and could result in permanent numbness. Awesome. Also, the left mandibular 3rd molar is actually pushing up against the left maxillary 2nd molar, so that probably won't need to come out either. It just needs to be monitored.

Another thing that stumped him was that I had no pain. None. Not from the remains of the tooth in my gumline, not from the massive cavity on the other side of my mouth, nothing. Very odd, apparently. Good and bad; perhaps if I had felt something when the cavities started forming I could have had them filled rather than pulled. Of course, if I had just gone to the dentist sometime in even the past year I could have had them filled. C'est la vie. 

Anyhow, Monday morning I am going in to have my to upper wisdom teeth extracted, and I am slightly freaked out. I have dreams about teeth falling out, and they are not pleasant. I also worry; stuff could go wrong! He's just going to numb me, I won't be knocked out, but still, what about numbness! Infection! Blood everywhere! Okay, there will be blood ... ugh. One thing I do need to remember is to get copies of those xrays. Those were pretty nifty.

slightly freaked out,

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