Saturday, April 21, 2007

Wisdom Tooth Hell Too

Gy rights, I shoulg be tyking like gis.

My wisdom tooth is now sitting folornly on my desk in front of me, a surprisingly large enamel fascist covered in dried blood.

In my innocence, I had assumed I'd pop into the dentist who would cheerfully extract the tooth with a gentle pop, the pain subsiding like water down a plughole. I did not expect:
1) Lying in a chair caked in my own sweat
2) Five local injections during a half-hour rape
3) Having the gum around my tooth sliced open with a scalpel
4) Being literally stiched up
5) Being financially stitched up

It is not often I bemoan selling my car a couple of years ago. After all, there is no real need to have a vehicle when you live in London, plus spiralling costs to run the fucker had put paid to that.
But to have one yesterday, that would've been sweet.

It took me an hour and a half to tube it to the private dentist my Mum recommended. And he is a very nice man. His surgery was spotless, modern and clean, his walls covered in commendations and certificates. I got the sense that he had a well-deserved and very comfortable life.
Although he should've been a butcher.

I was keen to know if I had been somewhat of a primadonna to be haranguing the NHS as an emergency case they'd refused to deal with, but the good dentist reassured me that I wasn't imagining things.

'Oh crikey', he'd said when he first looked into my mouth.
'Excellent', I thought. 'This is bad after all. Right, get on with it then.'

'You may feel a slight prick', said the dentist without irony.
I am Lord of the Pricks, my friend. There is nothing slight about it.
Then he stabbed me in the cheek with a disturbingly thick needle. It hurt. Considerably. But I didn't care. Once injected, that's as painful as it's going to get.

Or so I thought.

He injected me a second time. My lips went numb, then my tongue, as if I'd been french kissing icebergs. The dentist started to chisel at my gum, a strange sensation, a bit like being felt up by a loved one whilst sedated by novocaine. You may be able to feel their wrist on your thigh, you may even think that you can, in fact, feel their gentle carress on your sensitive bits, but you can't. All numb, but being able to feel the surrounding non-numb areas confounds your senses.
'Oh golly', said the dentist.
'Unggh?' I replied.
'Your abscess has burst. There's pus everywhere.'
'Angh'. I'm so fucking sexy.

He chislled away. He then produced a drill to peel away the gum from the tooth. Then he procured a pair of handheld dental clamps.
The 21st fucking century and we haven't advanced one iota. Having never had a tooth removed in my life, I had assumed that maybe there'd be some kind of machine for this, but no, just good old pliers.

I began to sweat. The dentist's assistant held the suction device that I'm more used to seeing remove saliva. I noticed with considerable angst the transparent tube vaccuum up clumps of thick, sticky blood instead.
'Are you ok?'
'Nugger 'njekkon.'

The injections were meaningless. I still felt pain as the dentist tugged and tugged at the tooth and flirted with nerves that hadn't been rendered immune to pain.
'Hmm. It's not coming out.' He swapped tools and continued chiselling, reaching again for the pliers and twisting, enthusiastically fucking TWISTING, as if he was attempting to wrestle a cork from a particularly stubborn bottle of Pinot.
For ten minutes.
'CHIIIST!' I screamed, involuntarily grabbing hold of the dentist's arm.
'Oh my. I think I'll have to cut the gum open.'

Shit. From deciding it wanted out, my tooth was now resolutely staying in. I had wondered how he was going to pluck this thing from its home. After all, when I looked into my mouth that morning, I could only see the merest glisten of tooth as the rest of it was buried by a sea of angry red gum.
So the dentist produced a scalpel and deftly sliced it open. Now he had something his pliers could grab on to, even if I was gargling blood.

I was shaking now, a sheen of sweat all over me. I wriggled. I squirmed. Then the dentist clamped his free hand to the lower half of my mouth.
'I don't want to dislocate your jaw while I do this.'
'I'm SAS', I think to myself. 'I'm SAS and I'm being tortured by fundamentalists but I'm in an Elite Squad and can take this.'
I relaxed my body and tried a Fuck You smile, except a man had his gloved hands in my mouth.
Then the dentist began tugging with a ferocity that scared me. Surely when this fucker pops out, he's going to smash all my upper teeth?
'Fuggin' huggy ug!' I yelled.
I started crying. A tear left the corner of one eye and escaped down my face and presumably onwards down a numb cheek, while my hands gripped onto the armrests for dear life.
'Ah! It's out,' said Klaus Barbie, except it was out in a sense. He still had to trim it from its moorings and continue yanking. Aparrently the roots of this tooth had fused and another bone had grown in between like a wrought iron anchor.

When it was over, I didn't feel relieved. I felt very, very shaken. I felt sick and disorientated. I heard a chink as the tooth was removed and dropped onto a stainless steel trolley.
'Fucking cunt', I directed silently at the tooth. And a little bit at the dentist.
I don't think I can repeat that three more times for the other wisdom teeth.

The dentist stitched me up. I lie there impassively, the victim of a brutal assault, my head getting tugged to one side as the stitch is stretched its full length. I sit up as he told me what tablets to take and when, but I'm not really listening. I was trying to figure out how I will be able to make it home during the rush-hour commute while feeling a shell of my former self.

By the time I do get home, I felt no pain. The pills have worked and I'm even anticipating going out on Saturday night.
And then I wake up after a night's sleep. The painkillers have done their duty and I now feel awful. On looking in the mirror, I have an invisible golfball in my mouth and one side of my face looks like it's doing Marlon Brando's Don Corleone.

I paid a lot of money for this service. This has been an absurdly expensive April which started with a large three-figure bill for bike repairs and ended with a like amount for getting this fucking tooth removed. In between saw me attempting to melt my credit card in New York as I spent myself into a better mood.

Mindless shopping and wisdom teeth are rubbish. And I probably shouldn't be smoking. I've only had a few but you don't want to know what a mess the inside of my mouth looks like. Ok, I'll tell you: Like a tiny post-pregnancy vagina.

And speaking of vaginas, I used to think I was clinically undatable. Now I don't have a peaceful resolution's chance in Baghdad with anyone.

Even the Elephant Man would point and laugh at me.


Anonymous said...

Oh yuck. Seriously.

Think I mentioned before that I've never had even a cavity, right? Do you hate me?

Little Bird said...

Oh hell, this is something I have to look forward to.
I think dentists just see £ signs when you walk in with wisdom teeth problems. My ex flatmate ended up being a chipmunk for 3 weeks and eating through a straw with hers.

luna said...

Excuse me for being simple,but did you have an X-ray taken before the extraction?
Were you prescribed a course of antibiotics against the infection before you went in?Are you taking some now?
Did you take anti inflammation painkillers two days before the operation?
Did the carpenter inform you it will take a whole year for the hole in your jawbone to fill up?

Does your pride allow you to disclose how much you paid for this

thegirl said...

Perhaps he was a descendent of Dr. Christian Szell? You may have had an easier time if you'd just told him "It's not safe" earlier on.

Anonymous said...

You poor man! I had my jaw broken at 21 (decades ago!)so the dentist/sadist could remove 2 impacted wisdom teeth. Ouchie!
Sending virtual hugs and empathy.

Lady x

Anonymous said...

Is it safe? Is it safe?

Yes, it's safe?

Is it safe?

You and The Girl will get the joke

Nothing Man

Angela-la-la said...

Damn my CoE parents, I get the feeling I'm missing out on a really funny jewish joke here...

You poor darling. That sounded as utterly hideous as I worried it might be and is why I'm just letting my one grow without intervention other than a regular clean to get the bits of lettuce that catch under the gum flap bit.

And you're still gorgeous online; in text, no one can see your swelling ;-)

Ordinary Girl said...


I'm too stunned by graphic imagery to even send get well wishes!!

Boris said...

You poor bastard, I had 2 out decades ago under a general in hospital and it still hurt like hell for ages. And because I was out cold they had no hesitation in KNEELING on my chest to get them out. Bruised for weeks.

Try Rescue Remedy for the trauma

Finally use the injury to get sympathy from the girls - shitty I know but a shag's a shag.


fwengebola said...

LFM ~ You? Never had a filling? I've read your blog, ducks.
LB ~ THREE WEEKS? Are you winding me up? It's my sodding birthday in two!!!
Dr Luna ~ "Did you have an X-ray taken before the extraction?"
"Were you prescribed a course of antibiotics against the infection before you went in?"
"Are you taking some now?"
"Did you take anti inflammation painkillers two days before the operation?"
Erm, no?
"Did the carpenter inform you it will take a whole year for the hole in your jawbone to fill up?"
Do you mean Jesus?
"Does your pride allow you to disclose how much you paid for this performance?"
£160 for no new clothes, no new cds or dvds, just swelling and pain. Great.
G ~ I don't get this reference. Hang on.
Oh, ok. Another classic film I know all about but haven't seen.
Lady Anon ~ Impacted? Eurgh. I guess it could be a lot worse.
Nowt ~ I get it now. Although I will have to watch it to understand the safe reference in its entirety.
FB ~ Personally speaking, if it ain't annoying, don't fix it. And you're not missing out on anything Jewish, just a film reference. And to give you a clue, a MAN from Kenya won this year's LONDON one this afternoon.
But if you want a Jewish joke, an Orthodox Jew walks into a bar with a frog on his shoulder.
'Where'd you get that then?' asked the bartender.
'Brooklyn!' said the frog.
I love that gag.
OG ~ You could try and send get well wishes.
Bo ~ They knelt on you? Have they no respect for the unconscious?? And how am I supposed to pull like this? I can't kiss! I can't even eat properly, so any kind of sucking's out.

thegirl said...

You haven't seen it??? Tsk. It's Dustin Hoffman and Laurence Olivier at their finest.

Hire it, borrow it, or steal it: just bloody watch it, OK?

thegirl said...

Although thinking about it, you might want to wait till your jaw is no longer painful before you watch the movie. Trust me on this.

fwengebola said...

Better than Tootsie?
I think I know what you're referring to. I think that scene may give me some perspective.

londongirl said...

I had all four wisdom teeth removed in one go - but fortunately (it sounds) under general and in hospital.

It was horrid and I looked like a multi-coloured hamster (bruising on the cheeks) but it sounds like you definitely had the worst of it. Much sympathy coming your way.

Oh and I had chest bruising too...

Anonymous said...

My mates a dentist and I bought him a copy of Marathon man from the bargin bucket at HMV. He has lent it out to all his dentist mates and they all love it. bunch of f**kin Sadists.....
and the tight ba**ard never buys a round even though he's loaded.....

Peach said...

yuck yuck poor you, that's awful

Ordinary Girl said...

Have recovered sufficiently now to send you lots of get well wishes!

Oh, and to make a mental note to myself to never have my wisdom teeth out!! (Fortunately for me I only have half a one at the moment - not surprising now I think about it?!)

luna said...

An abscess or an infection do show up on an X-ray,so your dentist was aware you had an abscess and he should never have operated under the circumstances.
This is why you were in this terrible agony,because under anaesthetic normally you wouldn't feel a thing.

Also apart from the pain he put you through he was totally irresponsible to open you up straightaway because it increases the risk of the infection spreading further into the blood stream and damaging your heart,if you ever have an undetected condition on that side.
Remember James Brown the Sex Machine?
He went to the dentist and promptly fell into a coma and then died.

What he should have done is give you a course of antibiotics for close to a week to control the flare up and then,after he'd acerted you were completely painfree,taken the tooth out.

I paid about the same amount a few years ago to have two impacted wisdom teeth removed,one of them tricky to slice up as its roots laid entwined with the facial nerve.Of course I had to pay for the return trip plus one hotel night too.

Apart from an electrical jolt on the first huge injection I didn't feel anymore than an unpleasant drilling and cutting sensation,and everytime I started to feel an ache the doctor would top up with smallish injections of novocaine.
I trusted him totally as he specializes in these difficult cases and basically does it all day and noone ever died,although some people can become temporarily or permanently paralyzed on one side so they have to smile on the other side of their face lol.
I had especially requested a local anaesthetic because I am terrified of being unconscious into somebody's hands -and I see it's not paranoia too- and because I wouldn't have been able to afford it otherwise.
The nurse asked me if I had brought along my ipod (?) pass the time during the operation.

Afterwards the swelling and the pain were OK to bear,but I must say I felt more pain the week after than the day after,and on and off for several further months,but no big deal.

You can buy arnica pills and gel against bruising at Boots.

fwengebola said...

LG ~ Aw, a multi-coloured hamster sounds charming.
But where the heck did the chest bruicing come from? Were you being kneed as the dentist wrestled with you teeth too?
Anon ~ That sounds right. The amount of money some people make is in direct proportion to the amount of rounds they try and avoid.
Peach ~ It's ok, it's all calming down now. Plus the swelling's not as blatant. I hated that bit.
OG ~ Thanks for wishes. You only have half a tooth though? Urgh, get it out! Wait, don't!
Luna ~ Holy shit! Are you actually a dentist?
Well, this dentist didn't say anything about abscesses or infections when he looked at the X-ray he'd just taken.
If I can take anything good from this, at least I don't have a dicky ticker, unlike James Brown the stoppable Sex Machine.
At least your experiences were good. This was almost bad enough to give me a life-long phobia.

Buggles Balham High Road said...

I felt it in the Marathon Man but had the pictures. I only had your words but they were so vivid I hurt more than when I watched Dustin Hoffman being butchered in the chair.

Sorry that I laughed as I read this. I really am sorry. You are such a funny user of words.

Day Dreamer said...

I laughed my ass off, too. You do have a way of bringing your stories to life. Sorry tho, glad that thing is out and you're on whatever healing road you're on. You do have to watch that scared the shit out of me when I was younger.

That settles it, mine stay put!

fwengebola said...

BBHR ~ Thank you. Although from what I've heard, I can't see how Marathon Man will be a nicer experience.
DD ~ Right, I'll hunt down a copy of that film. I also have a trilogy of the original Japanese Ring films I've yet to put my feet up and enjoy. Now they're scary.

British Gal Does Tokyo said...

At least you got something for your money (said tooth).
I paid my nazi 350 quid for bleach in plastic molds. Let me say that again: THREE HUNDRED AND FIFTY quid.
My teeth are still yellow.
Coffee and wine or a pearly smile? The former two win hands down.

fwengebola said...

Welcome, BGDT. I hate to break this to you but when I was in Chiang Mai, Thailand, a couple of years ago, I only spent £60 on getting my pearly whites whiter.
If it's any consolation though, my nerves were on fire afterwards, to the point where I couldn't be bothered to detach my money-filled daybag from my main rucksack when I threw it in the hold of a coach I'd boarded.
I was on already on an island when I spotted the theft from the bag.

British Gal Does Tokyo said...

You had cosmetic dentistry done in CHIANG MAI? (I don't know how to italicize comments, but read CM in a screechy-voice).
Good lord. I hope it was simply a blog-material collecting exercise.
No wonder you don't have a girlfriend.

fwengebola said...

I wasn't the only farang getting my teeth whitened in there! Oh, and the surgery was spotless and modern. It was fine. And it only took several weeks of coffee and fags to undo what they did.

Anonymous said...

suck it up a man about it...i got mine out not too long ago and i was playing lacrosse that same night...i went under general too....dont be a bitch!

fwengebola said...

You had a general? I had a local and watched the proceedings. Poof!