Monday, September 17, 2007

Oh wow.

I'm a huge pussy.

I had my first dentist appointment this afternoon in four years. I know, I definitely shouldn't wait that long.

The thing is, I have this irrational fear of the dentist. I have lived a somewhat charmed upbringing, with my parents footing the bill on cleanings every six months. Not to mention 27 years of sparkling, cavity-free teeth.

I've never had a problem. Not one.

This is why going to the dentist freaks me out. Because I know one of these days there is going to be this horrendous windfall when the tooth fairy lets out a big belly laugh and snorts, "You naive fuck! You thought you could get away with this forever?? Wuah ha hahaaaaaaaaa!"

Turns out, today was that day.

I should have known better when I walked to the dentist's office and found that it was right next to Durkin's. This was somewhat unsettling and comforting at the same time.

From the look of this place, I was fully expecting to get my first root canal from fucking Dr. Nick. Yowza. Hiiiiiii everyboooody!

The receptionist was nice and instructed me to go sit down in one of the rooms and I already felt nervous. Pretty soon after, the hygienist came in and took some x-rays and I explained to her that I was a little scared since I haven't been to the dentist in so long. She did little to quell my fears.

"Are you a regular flosser?"

"Um. Well. Hm. No."

"Ok, well that is not a good start."

She looked at me disapprovingly and then pulled some photos out of the drawer next to me.

"These are the advanced stages of gum disease".

I looked around me awkwardly, as if maybe I was getting punked. Nope. She was for real.

Finally she took some x-rays and then the dentist, Dr. Chen, came in. Ok, seriously, it was Hiro from Heroes. I'm not kidding. Dead on.

So Hiro asked me a few questions and we got underway. He looked at my x-rays and told me everything looks "really good actually" and I just have one little cavity to fill.

The blood drained from my face. I don't think he expected my reaction.

"A cavity? Really?"

I looked at him like a puppy dog that's just been scolded.

He sensed my nervousness, "It's really no big deal. It's very shallow, so I won't have to do much drill."

*Gulp* "Drilling?"

"Miss Gates, you won't feel a thing. The novocaine work very well."

My stomach dropped. My eyes wandered over to the hygenist's table and inevitably there was the needle.

I started tapping my feet against each other and shoved my hands in the pockets of my jacket.

He then explained to me the costs of everything and asked me what kind of filling I wanted.

"Ha. I don't know. The least expensive?"

If I'm going to be paying out the ass for this, I better be getting grilled out Lil John style.

I can't remember if I said that out loud or not.

So he puts this numbing gel on and then OUT OF NOWHERE plunges the needle into my gums without ANY WARNING.

"It's better you not see it coming."

He smiles and my eyes tear. Nurse Ratchett looks on like she is enjoying watching me squirm.

Finally the drilling starts and I actually laughed out loud at one point. He takes the drill out and asks me if I'm okay. I say, "Yeah, sorry about that. The sound of the drill is just really unsettling!"

After the drilling is over, the hygenist finished cleaning my teeth and gave me one hell of a flossing.

So that was it. My first cavity.

And it turns out, the only thing that hurt about the whole experience was my wallet.

Thanks to my parents for 27 years of inexpensive cavity-free living!


Peter DeWolf said...

Happy to hear that you made it through virtually intact.

The Lil Jon bit made me laugh...

And wonder why I don't have a pimp cup.

country roads said...

I need to go to the dentist, but fear it for all of those same reasons...

Nurse Ratchett..hahahah

brookem said...

oh i totally hear you. i hadn't had a cavity ever, and didn't go to the dentist for a few years, finally went, and had 6, SIX!!!, cavities! i was flipping. and it's so flipping expensive! out of control.
i LOVED the lil jon comment. thank you for that.

SarahLeigh said...

DUDE. They also just found my first cavity this year, and I'm 26. Our golden girl status couldn't have lasted forever. I was almost ashamed to hear that I had a cavity. Like actually ashamed.

And then I'm telling pops, that I guess it had to happen sometime and that finally, after 26 years, I had a cavity.

I kid you not, his response:

"Well kiddo, actually it's one cavity in one year, because when you went to the dentist last year, you didn't have any cavities, now did you?"

Thanks, dad. Way to cheer me up and make paying the $200 filling fee worth it.

Hellafied said...

And here I'd been living a life ignorant of dental fees. Shame on me.

Grace said...

Great seeing you last night. I love being champagne drunk.

I was actually going to make a dentist appt. today. I think I've decided against it.

mindy said...

Those hygienists get really anal about the flossing. A couple of years back I got a major scolding for "not flossing deeply enough". Jeepers. Haven't made that mistake again, let me tell you.

The Idea Of Progress said...

I went to get a tooth fixed this week. While the dentist was fixing it (and doing an excellent job) he noticed another filling with a crack in it.

He said, let's go ahead and fix this one too.

So, instead of paying $175, I'm out $340.

But my teeth look good.