Liralen Li (liralen) wrote,
Liralen Li

Going To The Dentist

Went to the dentist today. It's been nearly a year, what with everything happening with Jet's birth and all. And, for the first time in quite some time, I have a cavity. It's not from neglect, it's from an old filling that's starting to disintegrate and the edges of the crevices between the old filling material and my tooth is starting to decay. Best to get it early. They had a cool little laser thingy that bounce light off the material and how much bounces back determines if it's a 'real' cavity or not. Much nicer than them shoving a pick into the crevice and figuring out how bad it is by how much it sticks.

So not bad. I have another filling that's starting to go and he wants to refill that one, too. The previous dentist was putting in the tooth colored composite, and this guy says that the silver fillings last longer, and I thought the composite lasted longer, but with molars, I could see how metal would be better than ceramic. Still. It's interesting to be faced with the conflicting data. I'll probably go ahead and have them refilled and see what kind of work the guy does.

With dentists it's kind of weird, for me. I far more admire the dentist that'll just make things hurt *enough* the one time to get it fixed right than the tippy-toe kind of dentist that makes loose crowns (of which I have one and it'll have to be watched from just such a dentist). This new guy is kind of weird. On one hand he makes really awful conversation for a dentist. Just kind of stupid stuff that even a geek like me peers mildly at, like saying he liked the chocolate mint buffing material so much he ate some of it when they first got it. On the other hand, he does the right stuff, like actually methodically checking all my gum pockets, mentioning which ones bleed, which ones are how deep, and calibrating future examinations.

What he was doing was coming across as really strained and he was trying way, way, way too hard to be funny. But I laughed to put him at ease, which is my socially gracious thing for the year.

He did the cleaning himself. I guess that's one of the things about a new practice, you get the dentist to do a lot of the work himself, and my teeth are clean. They don't ache all that much, and the amounts of force he used were very appropriate for the deposit levels I usually get after a whole year without a cleaning. He even said I was free to bonk him on the head if something hurt too much. I saved my story about the dentist that got punched through a cubicle wall for later... no, it wasn't me that punched him.

So I'll go back on Tuesday to get my fillings done and I'll see how he is with the syringe and drill, and, more importantly, all the adjustments afterwards. I've had so many fillings, it'll be a better way for me to calibrate how he works and how well he does with all the adjustments that have to be made with my weird bite, the tooth guard.

It might seem odd, but, for me, a good dentist is a thing to treasure. I have had so many problems with my teeth I've finally gotten around to the view that dentists are people that fix things that would otherwise be really awful and painful and terrible. I don't want to live with what would have happened if I hadn't had dentists rooting around in my mouth all those many times that they've had to, everything from teeth (yes, not tooth, teeth) shattered by someone else's skull to chips off teeth simply from when I grind my teeth when under pressure. So I'm really hoping this guy will be as good as the cleaning seems to indicate.

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