Friday, February 5, 2010

I Need a Chimney Sweep...

To clean my teeth!

I have been up all night with a throbbing face and a terrible cavern that only a day ago was home to my upper right molar. Tooth # 2, I miss you friend. I was told that the only options were root canal (NO!) or extraction (NO!). I went with the cheaper option, but am wallowing in regret and pain right now. This is the first non-wisdom tooth I have had pulled. Depressing.

Since having the tooth pulled I have learned a few interesting things.

1. My dentist doesn't believe in writing pain meds, despite my throbbing head and no sleep, despite the fact he had to yank and crank on this tooth for almost forty minutes straight to get it out. It felt like my brain was being gouged with a screwdriver. He finally had to use something called a "cowbell" to get it out. My neck is actually sore from the tugging. My sinuses hurt from it. It was like having my gums assaulted by a wrench.

2. When I went back in to have it looked at today I naively thought he would see how inflamed it is and see the error of his ways and actually do something that would help me. Hell no. In keeping with his Eastern medicinal philosophies he looked at it, swabbed a Q-Tip in something that tasted like clove and told me it would get better. Standing up, I noticed that my mouth tasted like... the leftovers of a house fire. What?! Yes, a house fire. It tasted just like what a burned house smells like. "It's creosote, " he says.

"Like the shit they scrape out of your chimney?!"

Yes, that stuff. He informs me it'd probably KILL me if swallowed (Um, good thing it's ONLY IN MY MOUTH!), but just a little jammed into the raging fleshwound of my soft palate should be fine!

Of course I go home pissed off, still in pain. I Google "creosote used in dentistry" and here is what I found:

In recent days, it has been deleted from the Pharmacopoeia in Western countries and not officially used for medicinal purposes.

But wait- there's more!

Hazards identification
To man: toxic if swallowed and by contact with skin, may cause burns

So that is a little unsettling. Also, a friend informed me of this dentist's shady past and spotty record. Why do people always tell you this sort of thing AFTER the fact? So it may be that this dentist isn't so much philosophically opposed to writing meds, but is possibly legally prevented from doing so. Scary.

I take back every negative thing I've ever said about Western medicine! Give me the damn drugs, man!


Poetikat said...

Scary experience! Where did you find this dentist? Creosote.. I never heard of that! Take some echinacea - it's a natural antibiotic and should prevent infection.

Your post just popped up in my dashboard. I haven't seen anything from you in ages, Mary.


Sidd said...

You're supposed to have to cross a border to get that sort of treatment. The times they are a changin. Perhaps your GP will give you some friggin pain meds. (Even through your pain you write with such humor) It's a gift.

Laoch of Chicago said...

They used to use oil of cloves as an oral anesthetic in the past. You can still get it in some stores but it does not work nearly as well as the newer benzocaine ointments.

I assume you had an abscess which usually will get better once a tooth is pulled. In a pinch you can actually see a medical doctor if you can't get to a dentist. They will usually give you an antibiotic and maybe some codeine.

If money is the issue often dental colleges will treat people for very little money.

*mary* said...

Kat- He's a loal but hails from India. He is such a sweet person, I hate that his work seems shoddy.

Laoch- The clove stuff is what he uses and is pretty good. The bad part is that I don't think I needed this extraction. I didn't have infection, definitely not an abcess. I had a good size filling- which he put in about a year and ahalf ago, which fell out and left me sensitive there. What scares me is that just 3 weeks ago when he put in a temp filling (which fell out that very night!) he said we could just fill it again. But yesterday he said it needed root canal or pulled. I hope I didn't do this unnecessarily.

Sidd- thanks, and LORD I hope so. I'm not a wuss. I didn't get pain meds for after childbirth but man, this hurts. BAD.

I'm on penicillin, so hopefully that will prevent any nastiness.

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