Thursday, March 04, 2010

Would You Like Some Cheese with your Whine?

Caution:  Whining ahead.

I am miserable.

The kind of miserable that makes you cry in the car on the way home, and then continue crying while you take shower and cry still as you dry off and put on your pajamas at 5:30 at night because you can't wait to crawl into bed and pull the covers over your head and hope to God that the next day is better.

I guess I should backtrack a little bit.

I mentioned in an earlier post that I was having some dental work done.

I think you can guess where I am going with this.

Yesterday I had my very first root canal.   It was a complete and total nightmare, from beginning to end.

I had to have a dentist in the Endodontist department do it, and not my regular dentist.  I went into the procedure a little nervous but not overly worried, as everything I had done up to that point wasn't too terribly painful and I had a "pulp ectomy" two weeks ago and my tooth felt great after that.

I went in, met my endodontist and we talked about the procedure.  I told him I was a little nervous and asked him if it was going to hurt.  He said that the procedure itself shouldn't hurt at all, and that there might be "a little discomfort" later that night.

He is a big, fat, liar. Seriously.  I don't know how his nose didn't grow two feet after saying that to me.

He started out with the injections to administer the Novocain(or Lidocain.  Is there a difference?  I'll have to ask my Dad because don't know).   I knew right away that this experience was going to be different than my others.  When my Dentist gives me my injections, they don't hurt.  He is very gentle and he does them slowly and he asks me if I am o.k. while he is giving them.

These injections hurt.  A lot.  I told him so but he said if I could muster through it I would feel fine in a few minutes.  He didn't do them slowly and he didn't ask me if I was o.k and they hurt.


He sat me up and gave the numbing agents a chance to work.  He asked me if I felt numb.  I told him "sort of".  He seemed puzzled.  He said he would give it a few more minutes but didn't think it was necessary to give another injection.

I should pause the story here and say that I am extremely hard to get numb.  My dentist has to give me 5 or 6 injections before I am completely numb and when he did my pulp ectomy two weeks ago he had to give me 8 before I was completely numb.

Anyway, I'm sitting in the chair and he is asking me if my tongue is numb(yes), is my lip numb(yes), does the side of my cheek feel numb(yes).  How about my tooth?  Did it feel numb?

NO.  It did not feel numb. I could feel the cold water when they rinsed my mouth out.  I told him so.

He looked puzzled again and said he was going to get started and see how I did.

Things started out o.k.  He began removing my temporary filling.  He started to clean out the canals and all of a sudden I practically came flying out of the chair.


He jumps back and looks even more puzzled and immediately calls the attending dentist over to have a look.

The attending dentist takes a look and starts explaining to me that some people have this extra nerve that runs along the bottom of their tooth and I must be one of those people and sometimes it can be hard to numb them and blah, blah, blah.

I don't care!  That hurts and you need to numb me some more!  Right now!

So the attending dentist tells me he is going to have to put some Novocain(Lidocain?) directly into the nerve itself(inside my tooth!) and it's going to be "uncomfortable".

In the words of my co-worker DeAnn, Oh  Hell to the NO!

In lieu of having the rest of the root canal done without any anesthetic at all, I agreed for him to continue on.  I don't know it you have ever had a needle stuck inside your tooth and into the nerve but it hurts.  Like no pain I have ever experienced.  And I have experienced a lot of pain in my life.

Thankfully the needle in the nerve in my tooth worked and soon I was feeling no pain.

The endodontist continues on with his work.  By this time it has been 3 and a half hours and I am literally shaking  because it's so cold in there(why do dental offices have to be as cold as a morgue?) and I just want to be done with this torture already.

He is having a hard time cleaning out one of my canals.  He can't get his file in there because my tooth has some sort of curve to it, blah, blah, blah and Dude I don't care just finish it so I can go out to my car and have a good cry already because I am  DONE.

It was at this point that the anesthetic completely wore off.  As in no pain killers.  At all.  It was one of the most traumatic things I have ever experienced.

He tells me he realizes that I am "uncomfortable" but he is almost finished and if I can just hang in there everything will be fine. I was gripping the arms of the dental chair so hard I was losing feeling in my fingers and shaking so badly that my vision was blurring.

He tells me he needs to take an x-ray to see how much further he needs to go.  I have been laying down for four hours.  When I get up I experience so much dizziness that things actually start to go black.  I thought I was going to pass out.  I had to sit back down on the chair and gather myself before I was able to follow him to the x-ray room.

This is when I lost it.  Tears streaming down my face as he took the x-rays.  He seemed so confused by this.  Maybe he has never made a girl cry before.  Which is surprising to me because he does root canals for a living.

He gets me back to the chair and tells me that he won't be able to finish it today and I'll have to come back another time.  Whatever.  I'll do whatever you say, as long as you just take those "files" out of my tooth and fill it back up and let me get out of here already.

He put the temp filling back in, gave me a few Ibuprofin to take home(are you serious?) and told me to call him if I didn't feel better in the morning.

As soon as I got home I took a Percocet and went to bed.  I slept for four hours before I had to get up and go to work.  I had to have Joe drive me because I was doped up.  I took some of the Ibuprofin he gave me to get me through the night at work and as soon as Joe picked me up I took a Vicodin and went home and straight to bed.

(If you are wondering where I am getting all of these pain pills, they are all left over from various surgeries I have had in the past because I didn't need all of them because none of those surgeries were as painful as this unfinished root canal was!)

This morning when I got up the pain was ten times worse than yesterday.  Unbearable, throbbing pain radiating from the affected tooth.  I couldn't bend over to tie my shoe without severe pain shooting up the left side of my face.  Forget about eating breakfast.  I couldn't even have my teeth touch together at all. I went to work hungry.

I popped some Tylenol to help me get through work and tried to make the best of it.  It didn't help much. It was pretty much a total bust at work today.  I was useless.

I called and left a pretty stern message on his voicemail letting him know how much pain I was in.  I may or may not have told him that I would NOT be going back there to have it finished because they caused me more pain in one visit than any medical procedure I had ever experienced, including my hysterectomy.  I also may or may not have told him that I was slightly angry that he told me I would feel "minimal discomfort" after he procedure instead of the white hot pain I was actually feeling. 

He did return my call this evening.  I won't bore you with the details but he is calling in a prescription for more Vicodin tomorrow and I am going back on Wednesday to "see what they can do".     I can tell you right now, if if doesn't include some Nitrus Oxide or some other sedative they won't be doing anything.  I'm not going through that again.

I'm taking another Vicodin and going to bed early. 

Now I know why people hate the dentist.


Jenna said...

Oh my goodness... that sounds absolutely horrible (wish I had a better verb to describe the absolute horror that you went through. I have been wondering today if you were feeling better, I am sad for you that you are not. I hope you feel better soon and they are able to help you with out causing you anymore pain. I hope that someone else does it who isn't so dumbfounded that you are still in pain and they help you. I hope this guy doesn't get his official license soon... he shouldn't be allowed to practice.

Lost and Found said...

OMG you poor thing! I had a great childhood dentist but some of these others need a few lessons in manners and communication. I've had a few root canals including one bad one and the endo alway tells me what he is going to do before he does it and reminds me if I feel any discomfort I am to raise my left hand since raising my right would smack him in his nether region and make him jump. You should NEVER have had to sit through any procedure in pain. I'd see someone else in the office and explain your anxiety and concerns due to this experience. Hugs GF!

Laura said...

I'm so sorry you had to go through that. You have every right to be angry!! I hope you feel better soon.