Wednesday, June 02, 2004

The Hole Tooth and Nothing But The Tooth

Well, yesterday (Tuesday) I had 3 wisdom teeth extracted for fun. For some reason, I only have 3 wisdom teeth, and not 4. I guess that explained why I be as dum as I be. Now I have 3 gaping holes in my mouth that will stop at nothing to cause me pain and agony. I think the surgeon secretly implanted a special device in my mouth so that my mischievious teeth-less holes can turn on the pain sensors of my brain whenever they want. Anyway, let me tell you about the experience.

My mom and I got to the office around 9 AM so that we would have ample time to fill out the necessary forms and have them ready by 9:30 AM, which was when I was supposed to be there for my consultation and surgery shortly thereafter. It's a good thing we planned ahead and got there early because if we hadn't, we wouldn't have been able to wait around for another 2 hours for the doctor to be ready for me. Whew, lucky us.

Anyway, as I was filling out one of the forms, there was a question about my, and I quote, "Heath history". As I sat there, I wondered if I really wanted to voluntarily put myself under the knife of a doctor who couldn't even spell health correctly. "Oh sure, I'm probably in good hands," I told myself. "Just because he can't spell health doesn't mean he isn't a good docto...AHHHHHHHHH!!!" (runs screaming out of the office)

No, actually I put that little spelling error aside and allowed them to take me in for some X-rays. They put me next to a X-ray machine that looked like something out of Star Trek. I had to bite on some white thing sticking out of this futuristic-looking machine, and watched as the lady administering the X-rays closed all the adjacent doors, windows, shutters, and proceeded to put on a full suit of body armor made entirely out of lead. That made me feel really comfortable, and quite safe knowing I was standing there in what might as well have been my underwear and a bow tie, while everyone else is huddled up behind a bulletproof shelter several hundred feet away, cowering in fear.

As I watched the person press a complicated combination of buttons, these 2 clamps came out of the machine and attached to my head, which I assume were there to keep me from squirming away while the X-rays melted my brain into a soft gelatinous state. Then the machine started, and this telescopic panel started circling around me, buzzing threateningly...and I could have sworn I heard someone inside of it slowly chanting, "All your base are belong to us." After my brain was assimilated, the machine stopped, and the lady came out, took off her body armor, and cautiously came over and took me back to my seat in the waiting room to wait for my consultation.

Finally, my mom and I got to go to a room and see the doctor as he basically told me what he was going to do. He explained it in very simple terms as to not frighten me. He said that it was a very simple procedure, and there was no reason to worry. He then gave me another form to read and sign. It listed all of the things that could possibly go wrong, like swelling, having chips of teeth being left in my mouth, potentially dying by throwing up in my sleep, and loss of scalp and penis. So I signed it, and a little bit later, I was off to the surgery room.

I laid down in this big chair facing a table with a bunch of shiny objects on it covered by a cloth so I couldn't clearly see the instruments of destruction. To my right was an IV pump, and to my left was a blood pressure and pulse machine. The nurse hooked me up to the BP/P machine, and it registered me as having normal blood pressure and pulse. So I sat there for 10-15 minutes, and every 3-4 minutes, the blood pressure cuff did its thing and tightened up to update my BP. Also, I had a little clamp on my index finger that constantly registered my pulse. It was normal for the most part, except when it would get crazy and say my pulse was upwards of 200 beats per minute, when in reality it was beating the same as it was when it registered at 60-70 beats per minute. Also, the "Pulseox" machine (the thing that measures the oxygen in your blood and goes beep...beep...beep and has the constantly varying lines that spike up and down) would sometimes go crazy and have a bunch of really long and erratic lines that were really close together. However, the weird part was when they started disgrouping and reforming as skull and crossbones and my pulse registered as "666". Well, maybe that's the drugs talking.

Finally, the doctor comes in and starts an IV in my right arm. A few seconds later, I feel some sort of liquid splash on my arm, and I'm thinking, "Oh great, they struck an artery, now I've got a geyser for an arm." But I guess it wasn't anything serious because a moment later the doctor says, "OK, here comes the good should start feeling a little dizzy and disoriented." So I'm sitting there waiting for it to kick in, and I'm not really feeling anything. I think to myself, "I'm not feeling dizzy or disoriented, I feel just fin..."

Next thing I know, I plop down into a comfy chair outside of the surgery room feeling really groovy. I had wicked double vision, my head was spinning, and I didn't have a care in the world. A nurse passed by me and asked how I was doing, and I gave a drugged out smile and tried to figure out which of the two twin nurses in front of me said that. Finally, my mom comes over and tried to talk to me while I'm still relishing the opportunity to be pain-free and light-headed. I eventually get around to feeling my mouth, and I discover what feels like a deformed piece of gauze sticking out of my mouth. I ask my mom, "Wot iz tis?" and she says, "That's your lip." Then I realize my bottom lip is completely numb, along with my chin, which feels like a puffy sponge. My bottom lip felt like it looked like Mick Jagger's, and my chin stuck out so much it rivaled Jay Leno.

So my mom drives me home, and I have fun watching double the amount of cars drive around us and feeling like my head is about to float away. When we get home, my mom gives me some yogurt to eat, and with my swollen lip and chin, it's a real struggle. I felt like a retard trying to aim the spoon into my mouth without spilling it all over my swollen lip. I'm sure it looked real comical though.

But then the fun ends. Maybe 4 hours later, the numbness wears off, and the pain sets in. I can't even take a sip of water or a tiny spoonful of anything without having excruciating pain expel from the gaping holes in my mouth. So I basically slept for a while, and eventually the pain lessened to the point where I was able to eat and drink a little, though it still hurt a lot, and I couldn't chew without setting off the pain parade. So that was no fun.

And here I am now, 5 PM Wednesday evening. I can eat and drink a little better, though I still can't chew or open my mouth much without it hurting, and talking isn't painless yet either. So all in all, I'm sure the doctor did a great job, but the recovery is the worst part. Hopefully I'll get better soon.

Note: Not everything in this tale was true, and I had to make up a few things here and there, because frankly, the tooth hurts.

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