Wednesday, March 21, 2012

7 minutes in hell and not a moment longer

On Monday I had a little but of oral surgery done. Due to bad genetics, poor dental history, and a propensity for acidic drinks, read soda, my teeth are rotting out of my head a little at a time and finally one of them needed more attention than the others. Really, it needed it last year but I had no insurance and no capital to pay for it until the turning of the year.

So my lower teeth, second molar, needed to be addressed. The decay and over growth had gotten so bad that a filling was out of the question. The doctor offered me two routes. A cap, which could still allow the tooth to rot back out or an implant. The implant was only $250 dollars more than the root canal/cap so I went with the more long term option of just yanking that tooth and replacing it.

I generally ask for valium the for the day of the procedure as I hate having people poke around in my mouth. More importantly, I hate needles being poked into my gums. So I got the valium but this time I also got the gas.

So, as I understand it, the procedure went like this(all of this seemly happened in a very shot period of time):

  • use surface anesthetic to numb the gums, tastes like lemons and chemicals
  • place nasal mask for nitrous, yay wob-wob!
  • loose all sense of time and scope
  • inject Litacaine into gums, I don't care nor flinch, which is a first even on valium
  • Cut the current tooth out of the socket with a laser
  • pull tooth
  • clean out the root and any remaining tooth pieces
  • put in the implant
  • take some pictures and x-rays
  • show pictures and x-rays to me
  • decide I have no real comprehension due to drugs, make decision on packing in new bone
  • remove implant since it's not sitting right
  • dig a bit more of the gum out
  • pack in fake bone pieces to bolster area
  • Take gas away from me, sad no more wob-wob, but still don't care what's going on, lots of nitrous still in my system
  • stitch up gums
  • recover from gas
  • realize that was I though was the past 30 minutes took 2 hours

While I may have not realized it had taken that long the doctor did and near the end was encouraging me as my jaw was tired and while *I* hadn't felt the pain my system had and I was running low on chemical encouragement.

All in all the procedure went well and I feel like the doctor made the right decisions even if I couldn't at the time. We even had a little snafu during the payment and they were understanding about my troubles with my HSA.

While almost all the people on this list are well out of range of the place I cannot recommend Avanti Dental Care in Alpharetta enough. Reasonable and they work with you and don't just take the insurance company's side. I would link to their site but it seems to be down. Just look them up if you are interested.

Today is the first day I've felt together since but there was a lot this past week/weekend that altered my sense of reality. Very little pain this morning despite having the procedure done less than 48 hours ago. I'm holding off on the hydrocodone until/unless the pain comes back in force.

The next step is evaluation on next Wed and possibly getting my stitches out. Then we move on to putting in the implant and the temp stem. Allowing them to grow into the gum and then to add the fake tooth on top.


  1. That was quite a write up! I appreciate the recommendation. I need to get some work done and my previous practice (which was hard enough to find!) has changed dentists and it was a terrible experience last time I went. I need similar things, like gas and valium. Hope you continue to feel better!

    1. Thanks! :)

      I've had some awful dental experiences where the dentist was around for only the time of the procedure, hurried his way through and I ended up with bone spurs and bone loss that was unnecessary and this was from a place called "Gentle Dental Care".

      It's hard to find a good dentist, I'll probably come back to Avanti after we move south.