Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Monday 22nd November 2010 - Ouch! I need more Teeth...

I was a bit annoyed at The Tree today. At first I felt sorry for her out there stripped and waiting in the sinister murk, but then the rumours started. ‘She must be desperate for the spring’, it begins, ‘It’s her you know, willing it forward and dissolving these last precious days.’ Then it roars into a bitter chorus of ‘Maybe it’s all of them, hungry naked trees sucking the last drop of warmth from ...’ Stop! Then I remind myself that I am no longer mad and cannot tolerate such nonsense.
Sorry Tree! I was just a bit edgy first thing as at 10:20am this morning I had an appointment with the Dentist. Yes, it was only a check-up, but I’m not yet back in the habit of being a regular. Like many things, the Dentist was off  limits during the Dog days, or specifically the Seven Year Bitch. It was just not possible. Add to those 7 years the 3 preceding, ‘well my teeth don’t hurt so they must be alright’ and suddenly it was 10 years without opening wide.
Yes, dear Tree, the truth is that my teeth aren’t great and my most recent dental incidents have left me in fear of being sectioned. At the very least I’m worried that my notes are littered with ‘NFN’.
Wednesday August 26th 2009 saw my return to the world of pink rinse in a plastic cup. It was horrendous. I’m not even that scared of the big bad chair, I’m actually more frightened of the hairdressers, but I was terrified of being told off and still a little haunted by the Seven Bitches. Panic rising, I phoned the wonder that is Simona. Her calm reassurance is guaranteed. ’Don’t fret Darling, just take a couple of deep breaths and have a few sips of water.’ I did listen, but sips became gulps and gulps became glasses and glasses became gallons.
I was 5 months pregnant and for the first time in my life, excusing the whoopsie at play group, I actually thought I might pee myself. Not a little sneezey lady type trickle, a full on pregnant mare’s torrent. Fortunately, I did ‘nip to the loo’ and managed to save myself from flooding the waiting room, but the urgent sensation returned as soon as my bum landed on Mr Prod’s shinny black recliner. I’m too awkward to ask for a lot of things and asking the Dentist after 10 years if I could ‘wiz to the ladies’, was beyond me. I decided instead to employ my trusted cure-all-for-any-occasion: talking. I reasoned that if I was talking I couldn’t be weeing. What I hadn’t factored in, was that if I was talking, Mr Prod couldn’t be prodding.
‘Not good really, I mean it’s been ten years since my last visit and, you know, not that there was any particular reason...’ I rambled excitedly, but Mr Prod loomed overhead with his gleaming spike and twirling mirror.
’10 years eh? I had a client in last week who’d not seen a dentist for 25 years, so yours isn’t a record. Just open...’ As if I was going to let him finish loading that gun!
’Yes, I just need you to know that I’m sorry and I’m very ashamed of my teeth and I’m quite highly strung and I used to drink a lot of smoothies, but I’m slowing down now and I’m pregnant so that’s why my gums bleed...’
‘OK, well let’s have a look then. Just open...’ 
I wish I could say that I did shut-up at this point, but no I just kept babbling. ‘Is talking bad for your teeth? I think I heard somewhere that it was and the thing is I do like to talk, so that probably doesn’t help...’
I know that sedation isn’t routinely used in check-ups, but I’m guessing Mr Prod was at least tempted. Luckily, the very smiley, softly-spoken Dental Nurse decided to intervene.
‘Just relax’, she says whilst placing her hand over mine, ‘and a nice deep breath.’
I needed to keep talking, but my mind was blocking all thoughts except ‘don’t wee’. So all I could manage was a sort of high pitched verbal decay and this allowed Mr Prod to go in. He started shouting out a series of letter and number combinations, which sounded rather like a string of aggressive chess moves. It wasn’t looking good for me, I decided at best I’d be left with a couple of pawns and half a rook.
It was at this point I started to cry. Embarrassing I know. I am not even sure why. A mixture of fear, relief and needing a wee, I think. That was it, I couldn’t talk so crying was the only other option. It wasn’t the big, sobbing, square-mouthed body shaking sort of a cry, but it was noticeable.
‘Are you alright?’, asked Mr Prod.
‘Yes, I’m fine.’ I said, even though I was actually thinking: I’ve just got wee in my eyes,  but it’s all good. Pull yourself together girl!
‘OK, so I can’t do an X-Ray now, but the good news is that I can’t see any fillings.’
I couldn’t actually take in what he said. I mean, had he actually seen my teeth? They are flipping awful! Nasty little yellow pegs, like miniature un-popped corns. I expected that he’d take out half of them just to make the world a slightly better place.
‘You’re not going to take them all out and through them away?’ I have to ask him, I mean, the front ones are more fish scales than teeth.
‘However,’ Mr Prod continues, ignoring my outburst ’you do have an issue with grinding. We’ll make a night guard for you to wear, which should help a bit, but you’ll need to wear it every night. Basically, you’ve nearly worn your top teeth away and once that happens I’m afraid that there isn’t anything we can do.’
Not ideal, I thought, but was more surprised that when sitting upright I no longer needed to pee.  I felt quite calm and even managed to lie quietly as the cold mustardy, Blu-Tack-cum-concrete stuff sets in my mouth.
‘Right then, we’ll see you in about a week to fit the guard,’ concludes Mr Prod.
‘Oh dear! All talk and no teeth really, I suppose.’ I garble after spitting out little yellow pellets.
‘Quite.’ Murmurs an embarrassed Mr Prod.
Oh, why is it that I can’t seem to speak out when I actually need to, but seem incapable of staying quiet when I really should?
I won’t bore you with my last 3 visits, but let’s just say that I didn’t manage to win over Mr Prod with my witty banter and winning smile.
Today, went quite well actually. This was mainly because I was in pain and the dull throbbing in my face seemed to stem my usual flow of twiticism. I was rushing this morning to get myself and The Little Perfect One ready. TLPO was coming as an observer on the advice of the Health Visitor. Apparently you need to take babies to the Dentist with you in order to stop them being afraid. All a bit String theory to me. Nice idea so I’ll go along with it, but I don’t actually get it.
Anyway, in the haste I picked up TLPO without noticing that he was holding onto the ‘dummy’ remote control and before I could squeeze him into his snowsuit, a quick, black, plastic whack had collided with my left eye. Marvellous! I’ve never had a black eye before and now my first shiner was destined to be illuminated under Mr Prod’s spot light. I do wonder if he thought, ‘I’m not surprised someone took a swing at this freak. If I knew who it was I’d buy them a pint’.
However, I think what he actually said was worse. ‘You still have cleaning issues. I’ve found quite a lot of material between your teeth’.
Material? Not only do I feel properly skanky, but the Dentist also seems to think I’ve been eating the duvet.
The Little Perfect One was a star though. Even Mr Prod managed a smile. He’s also found the antidote for my bumbling lunacy : a short sharp smack around the head.
It’s weird, when looking back on a day, that the Dentist becomes a highlight. However, I’m sorry to say that so much of today was again blighted by The Big Ugly. I can’t actually type anymore for rage at how Big and Ugly they are, so I think it’s best I don’t.

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