[Potentially graphic content. Notice I never say that about diabetes-related posts?]
On Monday I noticed that my gums felt rough in the back and I spit blood while brushing my teeth. On Wednesday morning, I woke in excruciating pain. I popped a couple of Advil which made my morning bearable.
By the time we got home from seeing houses on Wednesday night, I couldn’t even smile I hurt so badly. And I was excited, I wanted to smile, talk, eat…. you know, live? I took two more Advil before bed and drifted off to sleep. You know how pain relievers last 4-6 hours? Well approximately 4.75 hours after taking them, I woke up in pain with a visibly swollen cheek.
I laid a cold wet washcloth on my face and took one more Advil. An hour or so later I was back to sleep. When the alarm went off on Thursday morning, I’d made up my mind. I was going to go to the dentist.
We don’t have a dentist in Cleveland. But there is a dentist office in the building where I work, and all of them (six or so) are in-network for my insurance. They got me in for x-rays and an exam in an hour.
A set of x-rays proved my thoughts right. A nasty wisdom tooth was not only tearing my gum, it was screwing with my jaw muscle and everything was swelling. I left with a prescription for Vicodin and an antibiotic as well as a referral to an oral surgeon.
I immediately called the oral surgeon’s office, which was also a plastic surgery office. After being immediately put on hold and listening to cheesy self-promos about augmentation, botox, face lifts and all that jazz, an overly perky receptionist said that she could schedule me for a May 4th consultation. I almost cried. Wait three weeks just to have a consultation? I couldn’t survive in that much pain until then. I called the dentist back and the lady on the other end of the phone oozed sympathy for me and apologectically told me it was wisdom tooth season* but she’d see what she could do and give me a call back.
The next time the phone rang it was her, letting me know that they called in a favor with a different surgeon who could get me in on Monday and hopefully do the surgery next week. When I called to set that appointment, the woman who answered the phone was realistic, took a brief history (including asking about heart conditions and diabetes) and then scheduled me an appointment for Monday afternoon.
Between now and my consultation, I’m looking at a house tonight, attending a friend’s wedding and helping my mom unpack at her new place… we’ll see how that goes.
*Wisdom tooth season: apparently this is the time of year when college students return home on break and make appointments to have their wisdom teeth removed making it difficult to get an appointment, even if your face is going to fall off.
I did take a Vicodin before writing this post….
After thought: If the teeth were wise at all, they’d come in nice and even to prevent an untimely demise.