Yesterday I had the first of the three procedures necessary to get my dental implant. To say that I was anxious would be an understatement. But I was also looking forward to having my broken tooth taken out. The exposed root had really started bothering me, and I spent a large portion of the weekend in bed with a fever due to an infection of the site despite my already being on antibiotics.
B insisted on driving to the appointment because I was such a head case. I’m a bad passenger seat driver as it is, but when you add in extreme anxiety, things can get dicey. I end up yelling, “Get in the left lane, get in the left lane, turn left, turn left, I said TURN LEFT!” It’s a miracle that B didn’t dump me on the side of the road and leave me to walk the rest of the way.
B stayed at the office while I got checked in and handed over one of my arms for payment. Then he left me to wring my hands in the waiting area while he took the little two to school.
Fortunately, when this office says your appointment is at 8:20, they MEAN 8:20. The dental tech took me back right away and got me all settled with various blood pressure and heart rate monitors attached and then started the IV line for the sedation while I peppered her with questions.
My one big concern was that I’d be aware of what was going on during the procedure and feel pain but that I just wouldn’t remember the pain after it was over. She assured me that not only did they use Novocain on the site, they also used a topical gel before they even shot me up. Phew.
But then the tech delivered the really bad news. I couldn’t have any solid food for 24 hours post-op – just liquids, pudding, yogurt and ice cream. After 24 hours I could start adding in soft foods like oatmeal and rice, working up to other foods as my mouth healed. But for two weeks I’m not allowed to have crunchy or spicy foods – no chips and queso – or to eat anything that is hot temperature wise. I also can’t drink anything that’s hot or carbonated. When I asked if that meant I couldn’t have my morning cup of coffee, she said it had to be lukewarm. Boo. And if I want to have my afternoon half can of Coke, I have to let it sit out and flatten. Boo again.
The periodontist came in a few minutes later and chatted with me about the procedure and answered my questions. Then she started the meds in the IV line. First she told me she was putting in the fentanyl, then the Ativan, then the Versed, and that is the last thing I remember.
I don’t remember anything from the procedure; I don’t remember being wheeled out to the car; I don’t remember the ride home. B claims that I told him the same story three times, but I don’t believe him. The first thing I do remember is climbing into bed at home.
I was in a fog for the next few hours. My mom called at some point, and I don’t think I was very lucid. I exchanged a few e-mails with Bejewell that ended up being pretty funny because I was so whacked on the vicodin the doc gave me for post-op pain. I also posted some funny tweets that I don’t really remember.
Fortunately, the pain isn’t terrible. I’ve been doing a good job of staying ahead of it. B has been a wonderful help with the kids, who have also been very sweet and concerned. Yesterday after preschool Campbell came in the room to say Hi and to give me his very favorite teddy pair to make me feel better.
Today I feel like a bus hit me, and I’m ready to get rid of the retainer-like thing that’s covering the roof of my mouth to protect the stitches on the spot where they took tissue to cover the extraction site. The thing is bugging me more than any other part of this ordeal.
Thank you all for your e-mails and tweets checking up on me.
As soon as I can take the protective thing out of my mouth, I’ll send a picture of my new smile. I’m pretty sure I’ll look like a hillbilly or a meth head.
And I wrote this under the influence of more vicodin, so I can’t guarantee it makes any sense.