Thursday, October 11, 2012

One down, 31 to go

Last week, while eating a bologna sandwich, I bit down on something hard (a piece of bone maybe?) and broke off about 25% of one wisdom tooth. (Yes, I have - or had - all my wisdom teeth, have room for more. Yes, I have a big mouth.) My dentist is biased against wisdom teeth, probably from seeing what problems they may cause, and recommended having this one extracted. So this afternoon, out it came. One more milestone on the path to the gravestone.

Even though I was to have a local instead of general anesthesia, my SO accompanied me. While sitting in the oral surgeon's waiting room, I wondered out loud what they used to do to pull teeth. "Whiskey and a pair of pliers," SO answered. Well, I'm here to tell you that the modern technique is not much different, except you are sober.

I asked the doctor how long the procedure would take, and he said, "It could take 60 seconds, it could take ten minutes." I girded myself for the latter, but fortunately it was only a minute or two, despite my jaw bone being "like marble". The total visit time was about an hour, though, filled with form signing, waiting for the doctor, waiting to become numb, waiting for the bleeding to stop (or at least slow down), and paying the bill. I don't know what this procedure costs where you live, but here it was $135, minus 5% for paying it all at once. This city could probably be a medical tourist destination.

Ordinarily, I rarely go to the doctor, but this year I have spent a lot of time with medical professionals of one sort or another. Dentistry is my favorite: they promote self-care, most problems are easily solved, and you don't have to take your cloths off.


  1. I had all four of mine pulled when I was a teenager. Even though I forgot I wasn't supposed to eat after midnight and had a full breakfast followed by a piece of chocolate (because: teenager), when I told the oral surgeon that, he said, "it should be fine." As it happened, it was fine, but because I had a general anesthetic I also could have died. Sometimes I retroactively freak out over that.

  2. Had all four of mine out at once, my only foray into general anesthesia to date. General anesthesia is the bomb.

    Hope you healed quickly.