Wednesday, November 16, 2011

that tooth again (lyn)

In 2006, I nearly lost my mind. It started with a tooth.  In short, my dentist at the time thought I needed to have an old filling refilled; without much thought I said fine.  Then my dentist discovered that the tooth was too small to be refilled  and instead I needed a crown.  I got one, and with it, unrelenting pain.  My dentist and his colleague  re-did the crown three times.  The pain persisted.  So next came a  root canal.  And still, the pain would not stop. I went to other dentists, ENT doctors, jaw doctors, oral surgeons, holistic healers;  I tried everything. The pain spread throughout my body.  I got sore throats that could not be diagnosed as anything serious.  A strange tinny taste sat in my mouth.  Throbbing pain continued.  It was worse than child birth.  I became anxious. My hands tingled.  I was dizzy. I was incapable of functioning normally.  I lost my appetite, totally.  This went on for months.  I was eventually put on an antidepressant called Lexapro that I am still on, five years later.  Going back to where I was still scares me.  It took four months before I began to feel normal again.  It was truly the most frightening experience of my life.

Today I go to an oral surgeon and am told that the very same tooth is not in contact with the tooth next to it.  X-rays from 2007 confirm that it’s been this way for a while.  How come no one saw this?  I see a dentist every four months or so.  Because there has been a small space between two teeth, food has gotten in and settled.  Over time, the food has worked its way into the gum and is now eating away at the bone.  It is seeping pus. 

I now have to have a bone graft on that same tooth with the hope of saving it.  If that doesn’t work and the tooth needs to be removed, well, that’s a whole other nightmare I’d rather not think about.  The surgeon won’t know until he’s in cleaning out the tooth.  The expense of this is exorbitant, but the doctor says I can pay it out over time.

I have to wonder:  Couldn’t this whole mess have been avoided?  Why wasn’t this seen when dentists looked at my x-rays from as far back as 2007?  Had it been noted then, I wouldn’t be in this situation now.

I’m scared.  This doctor seems good and I like his style.  I saw rave reviews for him when I googled his name.  He was a White House dentist and worked on both George Bush and Hillary Clinton.  I doubt they’d have a bad dentist.

Grrrrrr …hate even thinking about this stuff.  Just wish it were over.

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