Thursday, 13 June 2019

Wisdom Tooth Chronicles: Part 1

Wisdom teeth stories almost always end up mentioning horror accounts from the chair itself in the dentist’s office. You’ll hear about extreme pain in the extraction process. You’ll hear about people being afraid of the anesthesia if they choose to have it administered to them. You’ll hear about a 2 week long recovery process eating nothing but soft foods and soups, and then you’ll hear more about dry socket syndrome and having to go back in to the dentist to have that looked at.

Basically, you’ll always hear about stories that have really scary implications for those who haven’t yet had their wisdom teeth pulled. And as such, all high schoolers seem to be afraid of the dentist and their wisdom teeth coming in.

But today, I’d like to add a “it really wasn’t bad” story to the pile of accounts if not to reduce the fear everyone seems to have surrounding the topic.

If anything, the worst part of my wisdom teeth was something that I brought upon myself, and that was tooth decay. My bottom right wisdom tooth saw the most action in eating food as it grew in (because I always seemed to chew on the right side of my mouth). Over the years, I wasn’t great at reaching it with my toothbrush and really focusing on it. So, it began to develop a cavity right in the center. I didn’t worry too much about it.

That is, until it started breaking off piece by piece over time. It would become chipped, jagged, and even start to cut into my cheeks because I let it get sharp from it breaking off and not having it taken care of.

It got to the point that it would hurt all the time simply because it was dying tissue. And every single time the tooth cracked off more, it scared me that I would eventually swallow a piece of my tooth, cut my gums or cheeks more, or that the tooth would break off in a way that would be agonizing to me.

So I finally realized that it was time for me to call the dentist, set something up, and go in to have all four of my wisdom teeth extracted. The funny thing was, none of those teeth were impacted or below the gum line. Every single one grew in straight and had erupted just fine. All “should” have been on track to not needing to be pulled.

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