I hate going to the dentist. This has been a lifelong struggle.
I have always had trouble with my teeth. When I was very young, I certainly had more cavities than the average pre-teen. I admit–when I was very young, I wasn’t the most adept at dental hygiene. This, of course, didn’t improve when I was an undergrad in college, but my experience at that time was, if anything, a wake-up call. My first few years, I don’t think I drank any liquid that didn’t qualify as “soda” unless it was coffee. I have vivid memories of stopping by the campus coffee shop on the way to class and ordering a mocha. As if that wasn’t bad enough, after receiving the prepared drink, I would proceed to put as many as seven packets of sugar into the alread sweetened beverage. This caught up with me quickly–one trip to the dentist around this time revealed no less than 6 (!!!!) cavities, and it took at least two trips to fix them. From that point on, I actually stopped putting sugar in my coffee, and, a few months later, I gave up soda completely.
I’d love to say that, after this, my story concluded with a happy ending–a clean bill of tooth health, nary a cavity to be seen, regular, cheerful visits to the dentists full of sunshine and rainbows. That did not–or has not–happened.
I honestly believe that I have inherited bad teeth from one side of my family. Given changes in my lifestyle that are, now, about 15 years old, and improvements in my dental hygiene regimen, my tooth issues should have resolved by now. Unfortunately, I am still plagued by tooth problems, and I have come to accept that I likely will for the rest of my life. Probably the worst I have experienced thus far was an infection and a resulting root canal on a tooth that bothered me for years. Honestly, the issue was rather quickly fixed, I will admit, and I haven’t experienced any subsequent problems–with that tooth, at least.
So, I went to the dentist today for a tooth cleaning. The dentist took a look–three old fillings need to be replaced, and it looks like another tooth will require a crown because he noticed a fracture on the tooth. Great. By the end of this, the staff in the office will know my favorite passtimes, all of my cats’ names, and my last three boyfriends’ professions.
Oh, university stipend, why must you disappear so quickly?