Some tortures are physical
And some are mental
But the one that is both
Yesterday I went to the dentist. Time for the 6 month check up and cleaning.
There was a time when the Ogden Nash quote was true for me. A dental appointment was something that sometimes made physically ill. When it was a couple of days before an appointment I would begin to worry and imagine how awful it was going to be even if was just cleaning and check up. Sometimes I would cancel the appointment because I made myself sick thinking about it. My stomach would rumble and my head would ache and I had trouble sleeping.
I think my problems started early on. My parents didn’t take us to the dentist unless they could see a cavity and it hurt so bad that even the numbing cream they would smear on our gums didn’t work. And of course, we never went for preventive treatment so, there was always a filling or extraction needed. Add to the fact there was much pain I don’t think the dentist we went to liked kids. He would complain and was anything but understanding or in any way gentle. But maybe I just remember him that way because it was such a painful experience for me.
Even as an adult I had a hard time thinking about going to the the dentist. When I decided I needed a new dentist I went shopping for one. I went for a check up and interviewed three dentists. I picked one and he has been my dentist for 27 years! Do I need to say more?
Well, I will say more. I was one of his first patients. He is kind and thoughtful and does great work. He has done some extensive work on my teeth. Some of it was making what other dentists did look better and some was needed because of poor dental care in the past. Of course, there have been things that popped up over the years…root canals, crowns, fillings. Today he found a cavity. First I have had in a few years! It’s in a tooth that had a root canal and crown done a long time ago and now has a cavity along the gum line. Bummer.
I don’t worry before an appointment anymore. I know all will be fine.
I am ever so thankful I have a wonderful dentist, Tom.
Oh, and I have told him he cannot retire until I’m dead!
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