Just to chronicle my experience: I was awake during the procedure. Not fun. Twelve shots, three in each corner, to numb the mouth and the lower jaw. I decided to close my eyes when I saw those long sharp needles that were going to poke me. However, I did get a good glimpse of the blood covered thread they were using to stitch up the holes in my mouth. When they first started with the tooth, I felt like something was going to go down my throat, but the doctor told me that was my numbed tongue. So, it got a little better. The first tooth was the worst — not just because it was the first one, but it was the one with the most pushing. Afterwards, that side was more swollen. I felt lopsided. It got easier to stand as it progressed. I tried to focus on the music (I brought a walkman), but the drill occasionally drowned it out. Having the eyes closed did help with the music. Easier to relax that way, too. My mouth was chomping down pretty hard on that piece propping it open.
So, I get home. I drip blood on the floor without realizing it because my mouth is numb. The gauze is a real bother. The bleeding stops right about the time my mouth starts to regain feeling. Once my mouth started regaining feeling, the pain started. Of course, I didn’t have my pain killer yet. So, my parents went out to get it for me. I think about screaming. Screaming doesn’t actually make the pain go away. It doesn’t make sense. So, why do I want to scream? I think it’s a response to pain to alert others in the vicinity. That way, they can help you. However, humans aren’t hardwired for expected, prolonged pain, where screaming is annoying to others. Anyway, I’m alone, so I decide what the heck. It didn’t make me feel any better, but I couldn’t get my mouth open wide enough for a proper scream.
All I can drink is soup, at that point, which I do, because I must before taking the vicoden. Vicoden is mostly the stuff in Tylenol. Supposedly can make you drowsy and whatnot, but I never get drowsy from medicine. The pain does subside after a while, but it’s still a bother to try to sleep.
The next day is when it got swollen, one side more than the other, as I mentioned before. Then, there I am in my disgusting state, at New Year’s Eve with the extended family, and they want to take pictures. I wasn’t smiling in any of them.
Now, I just want to recover more quickly. I’m getting impatient because when you avoid using your very back teeth, it takes longer to chew. Much longer. And, I want to play trombone. I think I’m just going to tomorrow. Whatever happens, happens.