Wednesday, March 30, 2005


my teeth hurt.

don't be alarmed- i'm not. i went to see my fantastic orthodontist, dr. zetz, today, becuase i'm kind of high maintainence. my last visit was monday afternoon, when i swapped my tangerine-colored bands for turquoise ones. somewhere during the process (during the post wire-removal tooth brushing), my crown let go. for those of you who are unfamiliar with my oral issues, i have had a crown for the past ten years, after heading down a flight of stairs in a less than conventional manner. (thank goodness the metal door at the bottom caught me. too bad it shattered one of my front teeth in the process.)unfortunately, last september, my crown decided it no longer wanted to be in my mouth. so, in a scenario i'd imagined many times before (with great horror), there i was, mid-conversation, and all of a sudden, there my tooth was, having fallen onto the floor. for some reason, it was less traumatic than i'd imagined.

after it became clear that the runaway crown was not going to stay in my mouth, i tucked it into a stylish rubber glove, left it on my computer desk, and went on about my business. i attended a wedding without my tooth, bought groceries without my tooth, figured out how to speak normally on the air without my tooth, went out to movies without my tooth, drove back to kansas city to see old friends without my tooth, sold avon without my wasn't a big deal. (don't take this to mean that i will be content to live out my days without my tooth, though.) in all honesty, i think the disappearance of my tooth bothered other folks more than it did me. i mean, honestly, what is the first thing you think of when you meet someone who is missing a front tooth? go ahead, you can say it- "uneducated hick". i've been guilty of making snap judgements like that, too. it's only human. that said, i wandered around fairly oblivious to the fact that i was missing a tooth.....unless i caught someone staring at the gap in my mouth while i was talking to them. children seemed to handle it the best, unsurprisingly. ahh~ the innocence of youth! i had a couple come up and ask if i'd lost my tooth just like their older siblings had. they were pretty unfazed by it- after all, kids lose their teeth all the time, starting with the front ones.

i freaked out a little (okay- a lot- i was in tears) after my first dentist suggested a conventional bridge. here, i had one tooth that was toast, and now i'm hearing that the best way to fix the tooth is to grind down the teeth next to it and make a bridge. well, this was not acceptable, because

a. why is it we're grinding down perfectly good teeth?
b. if a kid knocks into this whole mess too hard, suddenly i'm out three teeth. hmmmm...think i'll pass.

actually, to be perfectly honest, i left that office in tears, resolving to find a new dentist who would offer another (non-implant) solution. i found that dentist soon after the first dental incident, and once i got across to him that while i was sure implants were a truly wonderful thing, they would not be demonstrating just how wonderful they were in my mouth. however, there was another, more pleasing option- and it didn't involve grinding anything down. i'll be getting a maryland bridge. (shall we go into the eerie coincidences here, given my upbringing? nah- wait for the book.) anyway, in an effort to make said bridge work, it was suggested that i go get braces. so, off i went to see dr. zetz.

to make the story slightly shorter, my errant crown was wired into my braces, with my colored bands over the top. (apparantly, most "grownups" don't use colored bands with their clear braces. however, i do not feel old enough to be considered a "grownup", and don't really care to fit in with "grownups" anyway. too many of them are old and stuffy.) my crown had the wandering spirit monday, which continued that evening and the next day, as it was sort of reattached to the neighboring teeth, but not nearly securely enough to guarantee it wouldn't come flying out of my mouth again soon.(plus, feeling and hearing vibrations as i talked was getting just a tad annoying.) so, i went back in to see the orthodontist on my lunch break. the crown was rewired again, i was put back together, and here i sit, with slightly sore, though happily vibration-free, teeth.

tired, sore, vibration-free teeth. it's way past my bedtime...once again. (one of these days, i'll manage to sit down and pound out an entry a little earlier in the evening.....)

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