One evening a few weeks ago, I went to the fridge, and cut a slice of cheese for myself. It’s one of the foodstuffs that we are pretty much always guaranteed to have in our house. So if I get a craving for a small little snack, I usually decide on cheese, as I’m rarely disappointed. You can even turn it into a meal by melting it in some way. Anyway, I’m going to stop before this turns into a blog post in praise of cheese. The point of this little cheesy anecdote is that I got a pain in my tooth when I ate the cheese. One of my upper molars was just being a bit of a bitch in general, so I reluctantly made an appointment with the dentist for the following afternoon after school.

I have, or at least I had, a completely irrational fear of going to the dentist. I don’t know why, because I’ve never had any bad or painful experiences getting dental treatment, but it’s just one of those things in life that I’d rather didn’t exist. Terrified as I was, in I went after school, iPod in hand in an attempt to distract me from that clinical smell and those strange and slightly eerie sounds. The National soothed my frazzled nerves, as did the cute guy in the waiting room with whom I struck up a nice conversation…

To cut a long(ish) story short, my dentist told me I needed two fillings and to make an appointment for that before Christmas. Which I duly did. The small, cream appointment card stayed pinned at the top of my noticeboard for the past three weeks serving as a constant reminder of the ordeal that was yet to come. At five-fifteen today I wandered in, iPod in hand yet again, but this time I was listening to Holy Fuck. Despite The National’s soothing qualities, I didn’t need to burst into tears in the chair (refer to previous post if this confuses you).

I was fine though, surprisingly enough. I wasn’t nervous. I was getting two fillings, and that was that. I leafed through today’s examiner until he popped his head around the door and told me to come right in.. I didn’t bother with the happy gas that we’d discussed during the previous appointment. I’m so hardcore I don’t need that. The prospect of a needle going into my gum wasn’t hugely appealing I will admit, but I didn’t even feel it after he put some gel on the gum first. Then I had to sit there like a dope while my gum went numb. Hm, that rhymes. I looked at the light overhead, the screen, all the little screwdriver-like pieces of equipment, the plant in the corner, the teensy sink, the posters and on and on.

Cotton wool was stuffed in my mouth; there was water and suction, drilling and cleaning, layer and biting; and finally that funky looking UV light. Despite the fact that I wasn’t nervous – and I swear, I really wasn’t – my legs would not stop shaking. It was really rather embarrassing as he kept asking me ‘how the legs were’. I just couldn’t control them and they were hopping around like nobody’s business. If you ever find yourself in a similar situation, I would advise crossing your feet, tensing the muscles in your legs, and raising your feet slightly from the chair. But within half an hour, ’twas all done. I walked around like a dope for a while, feeling like my face had doubled in size, as I waited for my dear mother to come and pick me up. I chatted with the nurse, a random woman who came in, and who then left with her drowsy husband. He was so nervous he had to be knocked out, so I’m really rather proud of myself.

Why I had to write this post, I really don’t know. It was not funny, or enlightening, or interesting in any way, shape or form. I think I just had to get it all written down here and recorded, so that if I need another filling, and the dentophobia has returned, I can read back over this and put my mind at ease.

So apologies for initially causing excitement at the prospect of a new blog post from me, only to be let down by the utterly mundane topic. I promise it won’t happen again, eh *cough*..



Filed under health

3 responses to “D-d-d-dentist!

  1. Áine

    This made me laugh – I had to get a root canal during the year and I wrote a blogpost about it! I do the iPod and the jumping-around thing too…my dentist does not love me xD
    Also, cheese rocks. Just sayin’.

  2. Hehe! Oh Jesus, I don’t know how I’d cope with a root canal.. That might be too much for me just yet..
    The nurse was saying “Oh the music’s a very good idea isn’t it” and he was all “I’ll have to install a screen on the ceiling and put on MTV for Niamh and her friends” and then they expect you to reply but I CAN’T BECAUSE YOUR HAND IS IN MY MOUTH!

    Cheese is class. 😀

  3. Dental anxiety and fear is usually caused by bad childhood memories. Many parents also use the dentist as a way to stop their kids from eating sweets and other stuff that are harmful for their kid’s teeth. As for your case, I think it’s just fear of the unknown – which is actually normal!

    It’s a good thing that sedation can now be utilized by a dentist to pull out a teeth without the patient feeling any pain. The practice is now popular here in Las Vegas.

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