Thursday, 1 November 2007

Well, it's over!

I have at last had my tooth out! I have had an abcess caused by a broken root, and the hospital insisted I had to have it out. About a week before I went to the hospital for the dental surgery, I visited my dentist to ask about having a bridge, as it was the tooth next to my front one, and I have a tooth both sides of the one that had to come out so could support a bridge. He told me that I couldn't have a bridge for three months, to let my gum shape settle down, but as he was talking to me I noticed he was getting the blue gungy stuff that they use for impressions, ready. You will have to wear a denture immediately after the tooth is pulled, he said. A denture!! I was horrified!

Anyway, a couple of hours before I was due to have my tooth pulled, I went to collect 'the denture'. It was such a diddy little thing that I didn't mind.

At the hospital I had to have a blood test as I am on Warfarin, the blood thinning drug, and they wanted to make sure that my blood was thick enough to stop me making a mess of their floor! I had to wait for an hour in the dentist chair until the machine was available, getting more and more nervous by the minute. The tutor came over to me and said that it would be a difficult extraction because the root was in two or three peices, and they would have to 'dig around' to make sure that they were all out. She also said that it was going to be hard to actually extract the tooth because the crown was loose so they didn't have a 'guide' for their tools:0( I would also need packing and stitches.

By this time I was very nervous indeed, as I am petrified of dentists anyway! I then found out that a student was going to do this 'difficult' work. He seemed very nice, and finally started work. After the injections he proceeded to try and guide the tools correctly into the socket, and when at last he got a grip he started to pull. The pain!! I yelled out and the tutor said 'Poor you, did that hurt up inside your nose'? (It sure did)! 'I am sorry' she said 'you have such a lot of infection around the root that the anaesthetic doesn't always work first time, we will give you some more'. Fancy having my tooth pulled out without anaesthetic:0( I was now shaking quite violently and unable to stop myself. They had called Lennie in for moral support, and I heard him telling them that I had a history of dry sockets, and of going into shock. (All very true!)

Anyhow, he eventually pulled it out, dug around a lot to make sure all the bits of root were out, packed it out and stitched it up. They couldn't fit the little denture in so sent me to another department to have it altered a bit. It was no joke putting the thing in and out with blood pouring all over the place, and stitches getting caught, I can tell you. I was then sent on my way, with the denture firmly in place, after being told to take it out before I went to bed, then put it back in the morning. Easier said than done!!

When I woke the next morning, my face was swollen, and my top lip was huge! My son in law Gary had been warned not to poke fun of me over my swollen face because I was embarrassed. As I walked into the kitched he said 'You look like a turtle'!! I couldn't help laughing though!

It took a couple of days for my face to get back to it's normal shape, and after regularly using a special mouth wash for a week, I now feel completely fine! I thought I would never be able to tolerate a denture, however small, but I am getting along fine with it. After the three months of wearing it in preparation for a bridge, I may well decide to keep it instead. This one tooth tiny denture cost £200.00 on the NHS, and if I want a bridge, that will be another £200.00. The teeth either side of the gap are crowned, and I am afraid that once they start messing with them to make a bridge, I may have further trouble.

I hope I have not made anyone nervous about visiting the dentist, because this was not a straight forward extraction. The extraction I had about a year ago, again in the dental hospital, was very straight forward, and I had no problems at all!