I had all 4 wisdom teeth extracted this morning. A few years ago, I had another 4 molars pulled, which means that now I’m missing 25% of the teeth an adult human is supposed to have.
That’s a rather dubious distinction, but I’m proud of it. I’ve been through so many dental procedures in my life that this latest one is just another badge of honor.
(more under the cut)
So, I wasn’t freaked out by the idea of getting my jaw sliced open and having my wisdom teeth broken into pieces and pulled out. Instead, what freaked me out was the sedation.
The idea of chemically altering my state of consciousness has always disturbed me. Even when I got 4 molars pulled several years ago, I refused to use laughing gas. It didn’t help that several friends told me stories of the silly things they did after wisdom tooth surgery while they were still loopy from anesthesia. One friend told me he attacked the nurse, tried to run away, and then watched Spanish language TV once he got home (according to what he was told; he doesn’t even recall doing any of this).
I was pretty worried I’d do something crazy too. So, I wrote the following reminders on my hand:
But it turns out, as it often does, that I was overreacting. I wasn’t loopy at all after the procedure, just a little dizzy.
Similarly, I had braced myself for “moderate to severe pain” following my surgery, but so far I haven’t experienced any. At least right now, I have close to zero pain, just a little discomfort. Ironically, it feels kind of like I’m teething. Maybe I’ve developed a higher-than-normal oral pain tolerance thanks to all those earlier procedures? Who knows.
All I know is that I feel a silly sitting here with two ice packs stuffed inside the hood of my sweatshirt to press them against my cheeks. I look like a hamster. Except not as cute.
I also sound pretty silly, since it’s kind of hard to speak with wads of gauze in my mouth. To remedy this, I installed an app on my iPhone that will verbalize whatever you type into it, a tiny bit like the machine Stephen Hawking uses. Thank goodness for technology :).
But the best part of all this is that I have a perfect excuse eat as much applesauce, rice pudding, and strawberry ice cream as I want. Yummmmm. Plus, I get to miss class for a few days.
All in all, I’d say this is the life.
EDIT: Okay, okay, I take it back. It hurts like HECK right now. But I still refuse to take pain medication.
…This is gonna be fun.