April 20, 2006
Now, when I say I got a toothache, I don't want you to imagine me suddenly putting my hand to my cheek and saying "Goodness, that smarts!" Think more of me running to the bathroom mirror and looking in my mouth for the wasp that had clearly snuck into my mouth and was stinging my gum.
After determining that ignoring it was not in fact going to make the pain go away, I went to the dentist today. As some of you know, I hate hate HATE going to the dentist, which is funny since I've had to spend so many delightful hours in the chair. I'm told that I got all my childhood diseases at roughly the same time, at the age of four or five, and I got them bad. I had chicken pox on the bottoms of my feet and inside my mouth, for example. As a result, I was told by my childhood dentist, my permanent teeth developed into little 90 pound weaklings at the beach, constantly having sand kicked in their little teeth faces.
After sitting through a meeting with my boss this morning and smiling happily while resisting the urge to cry, swear or throw myself out the window from the pain, I called 1-800-DENTIST, told them my insurance carrier and where my office was, and they found someone who would take me right then, just run out to the car and go go go.
So I went went went. And like every other time I've gone to the dentist, the news was much worse than I thought it would be.
I was confused because the tooth that was hurting was a crown, and I figured it must have had a root canal at some point. But no, it was a crown on a tooth with a functioning nerve, and thanks to a poorly attached crown when it was originally done, there was decay and infection underneath. To make matters worse, it had spread to the two teeth on either side, one of which DID have a root canal and a crown but would now need a new crown.
So the total required work to Rob's Mouth of Horrors: TWO root canals and THREE crowns. The total cost will be about five grand, and my insurance stops paying after a thousand.
I wish I had a cute, pithy ending to this, but my mouth still hurts. My wallet's feeling sort of woozy too, now that you mention it.