Friday, May 13, 2011

My Teeth!

Growing up, like most adolescents of the 80s, I had braces. I had them put on in 7th grade, my orthodontist died, then a new ortho came in and decided he didn't like the first plan of action and wanted to do something different, so rather than the year I was supposed to wear them I ended up going into high school a brace face. It was awesome. Then, during my senior year of high school I had to have my wisdom teeth removed because they were impacted and cramping my mouth, thus negatively affecting the beautiful straight smile I'd suffered a few years earlier to get.

From then until 2009 I had no other dentistry problems. I went to the dentist as prescribed, got my routine fillings, and didn't think any more about my teeth. And then my molar broke and I had to have a crown put on. While getting that crown the dentist - across the street from my office for convenience - said that I had a crack in the bottom molar on the other side and I'd need a crown on that one too. Thus began a two years (and counting) painful tooth saga that I never imagined I'd have to endure. Fed up with the hatchet man of a dentist, I was finally able to see Alan's dentist this morning. Oy vey.

I learned:
  • A top molar has two cracks in it and will likely need a crown.
  • The fillings I had done at hatchet man dentist (HMD henceforth) were done shoddily and a few need to be replaced.
  • I have two more cavities to be filled, resulting in six new/replacement fillings.
  • I've completely worn down the enamal on the bottoms of all my front teeth from grinding/clenching.
  • I have gum recession that requires a gum graph.
  • I should really probably get Invisalign to fix a mangled tooth that's completely made it's way free of the rest of my teeth.
  • I need a night guard/e-appliance.
With insurance the fillings and one crown will cost $1400. Who knows how much the second crown and the gum grapht will cost. Based on the previous cost of my crowns I'm guessing $1200 just for that. Based on Alan's rcent gum surgery I'm guessing about $2500. And Invisalign? I was previously quoted $5000. Alan's night guard cost $1200. Do you know what I could do with all this money?! Well, I do.

Aside from the money and the fact that I'm terrified of the pain from the fillings, I'm absolutely terrified of the gum surgery. I *do not* handle pain well. The only upside I can see is that I'll need to be on a liquid diet for a week and so I'll lose weight. Oh, and my tooth won't fall out. I guess there's that.