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December 18th, 2006
02:43 pm


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Today I went to two dentists in rapid succession. My lower right front molar began to hurt last week. By Friday morning I decided it was time to call my dentist. My dentist isn't open on Fridays but the answering machine did have an emergency number. On Saturday my jaw next to my molar began to swell and by Sunday I was just short of emergency status. I left a message on Sunday asking for the earliest possible appointment. Monday at 7:10 am the receptionist called me and said they could fit me in at 8 am. I have never been so eager to get to a dentist. My regular dentist then passed me on to specialist.

Now an Endodontist is not a dinosaur, or even someone who studies the insides of dinosaur teeth. (Although, come to think of it, it would be an interesting specialty.) He is the brand of dentist who does the "root canal" of song and misery. Fortunately this guy was not a model rocketeer because he was highly skilled and would have been brutal to compete against in a model rocket contest. He had a bunch of keen miniature tools and knew how to use them. Within an hour my tooth had been augured out, reamed out, wired and packed. I left with Vicodin, penicillin, a numb mouth, and a smoking credit card. As I write this, the numbness has left and the Vicodin is kicking in. I am supposed to start noticing the effects of the penicillin tomorrow.

Dentists, you can't live with them, you can't live without them.

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(4 comments | Leave a comment)

[User Picture]
Date:December 19th, 2006 03:05 am (UTC)



I used to work for a dentist. (Doing research on selected blood cells. I was the only employee in the whole dental school, so it seemed, who never touched someone else's teeth.) If you hadn't been adequately provided with Vicodin, I would have passed on the tip for ramping up on ibuprofen (on beyond label limits), starting BEFORE the anesthesia wears off.
[User Picture]
Date:December 20th, 2006 01:32 am (UTC)

Re: Dentists

Even though it is after the fact, I am curious about your ibuprofen tip. My sister used to do statistics at Upjohn Company(Now buried within Pfizer), and did some of the original statistical work on Motrin. She said it was not effective against inflammation until a dose of 600 mG. -Three times the dose of an over the counter tablet. I wonder how your dosage plan compares.
[User Picture]
Date:December 20th, 2006 04:08 am (UTC)

Re: Dentists

Ibuprofen ramp-up: (This assumes that you have previous experience with taking it and know that it is your friend.)

Take 2 of the 200mg pills (tablets/caplets/capsules/gelcaps/whatsoever) when you get out of the chair, even though the anesthetic is keeping the pain at bay.

Two hours later, take 2 more pills.

Two hours later, take two more. By now, the anesthesia should have left your face unfuzzy, but the pain is only up to a dull roar.

When the pain starts sharpening, take 2 more.

Here's the story that goes with that:
My ex-boss is a periodontist. His wife is an orthodontist. Therefore, when she had her wisdom teeth extracted, she Should Have Known Better. However, the anesthesia was doing such a good job that she ignored his advice and went straight to sleep. She woke up in agony, of course.
[User Picture]
Date:December 19th, 2006 04:20 pm (UTC)
Hope you're feeling better.

I actually really like my dentist, and I really, really like my eye doctor. I have really weird eyes and she totally gets it. She also keeps up on the latest trends and products and I always leave with my latest problem fixed. She's cute, too, but that's, erm, immaterial. Come to think of it, I think my detist is handsome as well. Huh.
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