I bopped my way to the dentist yesterday, looking happily forward to having a tongue that wasn’t shredded to ribbons every time I moved, spoke, drank or breathed. Sure, I didn’t like the idea of a needle the size of a McDonald’s straw being unceremoniously shoved into my delicate gumline, but shit, my tongue!

*wrings hands*


/end hand-wringing

I waited and waited until 2PM, my appointment time, which seemed inexhaustibly far from whatever moment I was currently in.

Finally, the moment came when it was time to leave. I nearly lept into the the dentist’s chair, barely pausing to give my very talkative dentist a cursory “Yo, Dawg.” First thing he said, after we got through our discussion about how delicious almonds were and how they are, “Of The Devil,” was this, as he gazed upon the damage to my tooth: “Oh.”

Normally, I’d be okay with this level of noise, but for someone who spent ten minutes describing almonds and how GOOD they are for you, this was a downright frightening sound.

“Well,” he said, “let’s take some pictures of this tooth and I’ll optimistically get a filling kit ready.”

Not the most encouraging sounds one can hear. OH WELL, I thought as I bounded off to be gagged by one of those X-Ray things I’m halfway convinced is a torture device to teach kids to floss, I bet I’ll be LUCKY.

Famous. Last. Fucking. Words.

No sooner had my ass grazed the dental chair, did the hygienist hand my dentist the pictures of mah tooth. He sighed. Deeply.

Maybe, I thought, he’s sighing at the BEAUTY of my tooth. I bet it has a really awesome nerve or something. He’s geeky like that. I bet that’s it!

When he finally grabbed a piece of paper to draw a picture for me, I saw his face. It had fallen. He had a case of The Sads. He drew a picture kind of like this:

Normal Tooth:

Aunt Becky’s Tooth:

After he showed me that, he’s like, “Are you SURE you’re not in any pain?” That’s how you know shit is FUCKED the fuck UP.

Sadly, he wrote me a referral to someone who treats these things. I’m getting a “root canal,” on Thursday which, as far as I can ascertain, is sorta like a rotorooter for your tooth. Or something. I’m sorta “la-la-la” *covers ears* about the whole thing.

I’m hoping that, at the very least, I can get a new tooth that’s made of gold and covered in diamonds.

Then, I’m on my way to starting my grill.

27 thoughts on “Rotorooter

  1. Dude, I’ve had so much dental work a root canal ain’t nothin anymore. wait till your totally numbed up, and can hear the CRACK, and feel the POP when they break a tooth to remove it. Right then I thanked God, Jesus, and blessed our insurance providers. I felt no pain. I had to ask the nurse if I was bleeding yet. I LOVE good insurance.

  2. I had a root canal before. It wasn’t bad. It mostly just felt like my entire head was vibrating for a while, which honestly was kind of cool. The worst part was having the dentist’s and assistant’s hands in my mouth. Otherwise it wasn’t a big deal.

  3. I fucking hate root canals 🙁 Had one, got the crown, the crown wasn’t fitting right, my teeth started to hurt, flossed and broke another-mother-fucking-tooth. This time in the front. ON MY BIRTHDAY!! Lovely.

    Really hope you’re is more pleasant!!

  4. I had my first root canal last month, it was seriously not a big deal, (and I am terrified of the dentist–which is why I waited until things got serious *sigh*) .. anyway I used my ipod and rocked out while they did their thing. After, I told the dentist “wow that really wasn’t bad” and he said everyone is freaked out by root canals but that they have come a long way thru the years and its not as bad as it once was. My advice, keep one hand on your ipod the other on a tube of your favorite chapstick and concentrate on the music … good luck AB

  5. I’ve had 2 root canals…. and I survived with a combination of valium, nitrous gas, novacaine and my iPod…. drug induced lala land, ftw.

    I also have severe dentist anxiety due to the fact that I’ve had jaw surgery, gum surgery, wisdom tooth surgery and braces for over four years..

    so if I can do it.. anyone can… it’s really not too bad.. as long as they give you enough stuff to numb the shit out of you…. you’re all good.. it’s just long.. so I do recommend your iPod if the dude will allow it .. cuz it makes all the difference in the world to not HEAR the sounds.

  6. Yeah, root canals are NBD. Just don’t watch the procedure in the reflections of anything, safety glasses, the lamp, unless you really get off on it. Oh and be sure your bladder is empty, cause you may be in the chair for a while. Having to pee is always my biggest worry. The combo of nerves, waiting and laying kind of upside down mean trouble for me. Anymore I just tell them before that I will need a break.

  7. Ahhh, I’m sorry to hear that! If it makes you feel any better, I had a root canal once, and it really wasn’t that bad. You’ll be okay! (Still sucks, though) 🙁

    While you’re getting all this work done, you might as well inquire about gold teeth. Can’t hurt, right??

  8. I have extreme oral sensitivities and was terrified of my root canals since regular fillings left me in pain for WEEKS. But my dentist is DA BOMB. He numbed me, drilled, and then dribbed some of the numbing into the open tooth. voila.. no root pain. he cleaned me out and filled me and I went on my way. In fact, he had to do it twice since the tooth broke before the real repair was put in.

    Have the dentist put some of the Novocaine RIGHT ON THE NERVES when the exposes them, and you’ll feel a world better!

  9. I would never lie to you Aunt Becky, and I’m telling you a root canal isn’t a big deal. At all. A big chunk of time out of your day, and soup will be your friend for a bit, but an iPod and a pair of sunglasses will do wonders. The fact that he’s sending you to a specialist? Even better. They seem to have perfected the technique. Your regular dentist? They seem to be kind of hit or miss from what I’ve heard.

    Rock on and avoid the danger nuts!

  10. Good luck Aunt Becky! I’m kinda encouraged by the other comments, as I too will be facing a root canal in the near future. I hope to hear from you that it was not so bad…

  11. It’s honestly not bad — I’m a sissy when it comes to pain and needles and it was a 4 on the scale of 1-10 with 10 being wisdom teeth and 8 being braces.

    I recommend bringing your iPod and listening to something soothing while they work. It’s how I get through dental unpleasantness.

  12. Get the nitrous, if you can. I’ve had two root canals (one with nitrous, one without) and the worst part is how it feels like they’re filing the inside of your skull – which you will not notice if you are on nitrous.

  13. The same thing happened to me a few months ago…although I have no idea how I cracked my tooth. Root canals kind of suck for a few days, but they give you drugs, so there’s that.

  14. I JUST had a root canal yesterday morning. It was my second, and you’d think I’d have learned my lesson after the last time.

    Frankly it’s not too bad, thanks to modern medicine. They numb the high holy hell out of your face, but since they’re digging into your jaw itself there will always be a bit of ouch when they get their claws in there. When they’re done (if they can’t finish and cap the procedure in one visit, mine will take three,) you may leave with a temp filling and a prescription for some happy pills till you’re done.

    My entirely unsolicited advice? Bring some headphones. They offered Pandora at my dentist, but I just plugged into my phone and listened to my own jams while they did their thing. There’s nothing really to discuss when they’re in there, nor CAN you discuss anything, so take the time to listen to some podcasts, books on tape, or Enya while you zone out into a Fight Club-like Zen experience.

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