Friday, March 30, 2007

Shards of My Tooth

I was peacefully munching on a Trail Mix bar (breakfast) this morning when it happened. I knew that the "tell-tale" crunch in my mouth was very distinctly uncharacteristic of the usual consistency of my Trail Mix bars.

And I knew what that meant. Somewhere in my mouth were the remains of a tooth. So I did my usual "tongue-filtering", carefully prodding the chewage in my mouth and segregating the suspected pieces of tooth off to one side where I could pick them off of my tongue for placement, and further inspection, on an unfolded napkin on my desktop.

The damage was worse than I thought. It was an incisor, not some backwater molar I could begnignly neglect for days/weeks/months/deathbed. It was right there in front, where the whole world could see it and instantly judge me to be some Hillbilly from the Piedmont.

And that would not do, indeed. So I called my dentist.

I have been seeing my dentist since his girls were, well, since they were girls. The eldest starts med school in the Fall. Jerry and I go way back. I could find a cheaper dentist in New Jersey, but it's unlikely I will ever find another dentist who will happily give up a Saturday to trek into the office from Connecticut in order to make a post for my new crown, or who would hastily re-organize his entire Friday schedule to fit me in for a one and a half hour dental fiasco, or who would send out one of his assistants to pick up a hastily phoned-in prescription for antibiotics which I'm required to take before any dental work can be done.

Dr. Jerry is that kind of a guy. And I believe in being loyal to a man who has saved my mouth from excruciating pain one more than one occasion over the last 20 years.

So I called the office and they said, "C'mon down at 12:30." I carefully reassembled, to the best of my ability, the shards of my tooth and scotch-taped the reassembled dental relic to a paper napkin. I arrived at his office at 12:30, there was much fuss because I hadn't "pre-medicated" with the antibiotic (it's hard to pre-medicate for an emergency -- I must remember to try to organize this better the next time it happens), which finally got straightened out and, at 2:15 I was discharged back into the world with a lovely temporary crown that you can't tell from the real deal.

As I said, Jerry will give up his Saturday to come in and make the post (it's Titanium), and I'll seem him again next Thursday at 4:00 to implant the post and make the impression for the crown.

Luckily for me, we never got around to the subject of the great gaping hole in my gum on the right side of my mouth, where that inflamed crown was ripped out last December (remember that?!)

We play this little game, Jerry and I do.

It's kind of like "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." If I don't bring the subject up, he'll act like nothing's the matter.

I like that in a doctor!


Bev Sykes said...

Love the term "chewage." You know Meredith Viera had a similar situation and ended up seeing the dentist at 5:30 a.m. to make it to the Today Show opening the other day. You guys obviously have very good (and, I presume, very expensive) dentists back there on the right coast.

JoyZeeBoy said...

Thank you! I have to admit, I do have a certain "facility" for coining apropos terms on the fly.

And you're right. We here in Bos-Wash (Boston-Washington-Everything in-between) pay out the friggin' noses for medical care but we do get primo service in exchange for the big $$$s.