Beelzebub the Dentist

I’m not normally a wuss, believe it or not. I have a really high tolerance for pain passed down to me from my grandmother. It’s sometimes unfortunate, because I will run into something or bang my shin on something and think nothing of it. A week later I’ll look down at the bruise that’s just turning yellow and can’t remember how I got it.

This was not the case last Thursday. Through the orgy of pumpkin seeds my friend and I consumed, both of us cracked something—her a tooth, me a filling. She went in, got a filling, took some Advil, it was over. My tooth had a filling and that’s what cracked. Unfortunately, I have pretty sharp teeth (pray I never become a zombie), and one of my teeth was pressing down on the filling, causing it to crack further. This required a crown. Fantastic, right?

My previous dentist, who did not foresee or allow for this Sharptooth Anomaly, said I was very easy to work on. I just lay there like a bored housewife, get numbed, allowed him to do his stuff, and move on with my life. No pain, no anxiety, nothing. I don’t LIKE going to the dentist, but I don’t hate it, either. I recently switched dentists to a fancier, closer facility and this was the first time I had to see an actual dentist. He gave me the bad news (the same thing is happening on the upper right side, though that tooth I don’t feel at all), and we prepared to do what we had to do.

I couldn’t get numb.

He numbed me and drilled on the back end of the tooth in question. I recoiled. It hurt so freekin bad I couldn’t stand it. He numbed me again. The same thing happened—more injections, more recoiling. He numbed me a third time. By this time, my nerves were shot. I’m not used to that level of pain, and I’m not okay with it. I can be pretty tough, but the anxiety of knowing that he was going to go back in there and drill again and possibly hurt me so badly again was horrible. I was sweating and shaking. My heart rate was way up. My hand wouldn’t stay still when I held it in the air. The dentist said that HE was getting anxiety and that this never happened. He seemed like a nice guy and this isn’t Little Shop of Horrors. I’m certain that he didn’t WANT to cause me pain.

The fourth injection worked. The dentist *hisssss* was very fast and very good, though he did make a snide comment to the dental hygienist about some mouths being easy to work on and others not. (Trade me places, then, dickbag!) They made the crown there and I walked out like I had been given Parkinson’s and acute anxiety disorder while the very ground beneath me shook. I’ve never dreaded going to the dentist, but I’m here to tell you that I’m not prepared to do it again…but I have to or it will be worse.

What got me through was a dear, lunatic friend. A few years ago when we were discussing her ex-boyfriend and his “domino teeth” and his impending dental visit, I asked if she thought he would need a bridge or two. Her response was, “Sheeit. He needs a bridge, a toll road, the Power of Christ…” This is the same person who said that she once drank a Sprite before a blood test and they “wanted to shove an insulin suppository up [her] poop chute.”

These two phrases echoed through my head while the dentist was working on me and I started smiling. Then laughing. While the dentist was working on me. The look in his eyes told me that he thought I was very hysterical, which made me laugh harder. A toll road, insulin suppository, scared dentist…fantastic. I survived, but I have to go back. I may not get out again.

Me in the dentist’s chair, only with 90% more agony.

Me in the dentist’s chair, only with 90% more agony.

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~ by Darren Endymion on September 29, 2014.

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