Okay, conditionally withdrawn. I went for the “chat” last week, and he had researched EDS and was very interested in the EDNF.org patient resource guide for dentistry. He agreed orthodontics would be bad. He suggested that a splint that would level my bite at night would help take some strain off my jaw and hopefully slow down the deterioration. So they took impressions and scheduled me for today to try the thing on and adjust it. He said that he wanted me to try it for a month before I paid anything for it; if it doesn’t work for me he said there would be no charge. If it does work for me, it would run about $300.
This morning I got up and worried about leaving work and not being able to park when I got back (this is something I worry like a dog worries its favorite bone, Parking At Work, because I work at a university and parking is an Olympic sport). I told my husband that maybe I should blow off the appointment and buy shoes, since I *know* shoes make me happy.
O PROPHETIC WOMAN.
I truly thought I’d zip in and zip out. I sat down, the dentist told me that his assistant would put it in, check my bite, adjust it, and then I’d be finished. So, she went to put it in and then said she didn’t want to hurt my jaw so she had me put it in. It snapped in, but then, it wouldn’t come out. On the inside, I am instantly freaked out. It gets worse as she tries to pull it–and seemingly all my lower teeth–out. It fits over my bottom teeth, so she was pulling upward, really hard, on my lower jaw. Then she asked me to see if I could get it out again, but I could not budge it. I pointed out to her that I don’t have a lot of hand strength (see: ED-fucking-S). She kept trying, gashing my gum in the process so now the thing is stuck, my jaw is popping and I’m bleeding. She goes to get someone else, who “has smaller fingers than I do.” Smaller Fingers comes in and starts also trying to tug the thing upward. I hear the dentist go by and say he could cut it out if he had to and around about then the thing came out–surprisingly leaving my teeth in place.
At this point I probably should have had the balls to say, “I will come back another time.” But I was wanting it over with, and I am working really hard at not being such a people pleaser but it is especially hard where medical things are concerned. The dentist came in and apologized, “You are the worst person for this to have happened to, I am really sorry.” I forced myself not to apologize for being difficult and said, “Yes, that was not good.” They cut the thing way down, then we had to put it in and take it out a billion times. Finally I said, “I can do this one more time and then I’m going to have to come back another time.” They felt it was okay. The assistant said, “Um, I know you can’t take any pain medication, but I think you’ll probably be sore tonight so , uh, try to take it easy and relax, okay?” I wonder how she would feel if it were *her* going home knowing she would be in pain?
It was awful. I got to work, looked in my rear view to put on my lipstick and found a bruise at the corner of my mouth. It looks like I put an odd dot of lipstick there. There is a corresponding blood blister on the inside of my lip. My gums feel raw and shredded. My jaws are tightening and throbbing. I had that feeling that I had once again gotten on a ride that I have already ridden enough times to know that I hate it and I get hurt. Yet, there I was, with this thing that’s worth at least two pair of nice boots or one pair of Free People boots stuck in my mouth and someone trying to rip it out. Always, I want to hope that THIS TIME the thing we are doing will help, and once again, the thing we did not only didn’t help, but I got hurt.
It’s the crappiest carnival I have *ever* been to again.