Wednesday, June 20, 2012

8 days & no more hiding this smile

So, I'm eight days away from this process of getting new teeth, basically being over.
This process, started six months ago.
I was sort of scanning my other posts, and I never really went into what happened that started this process, but I'll sum it up as best I can.

Obviously, when your a drug addict, you don't pay hundreds of dollars to go to the dentist when cavities or a little bit of pain shows up. You just 'medicate' more, right? ha ha ha
Its not like overnight, my teeth were terrible. I think it was just overnight, that the problem got life-threatening.

My teeth haven't been in 'good' shape for years. Id say about 5-6 years ago, I had quite a few cavities, but my front teeth were still in good shape, so I didn't think too much about it. I knew I wasn't going to the dentist, obviously.
When I got pregnant, I was really sick. I was one of the pregnant women that vomited every day , no matter what. I cant imagine, THAT was good for them either. A few of the back ones were already broken by then. And then they just got worse.
By the time my son was a year old, all my molars on the bottom were broken at the gum line, the furthest ones back were starting to get covered with gum tissue they had been broken so long.
It was around then, that the top started failing as well, and the breaking, was sort of migrating towards the front teeth. The day my first eye-tooth broke, I was really depressed.

Its funny, because right about the time I got clean, and went on suboxone, I started getting abscesses.
The first few I just took a round of antibiotics, and they went away. I tried seeing a few different dentists, but they all gave out these HUGE numbers of money needed "before I can do anything" or just tried to get me outta the office ASAP.
Once a student looked inside my mouth, and I swear he turned white as a sheet, and I thought he was gonna pass out.

So like I said, first few infections came and went. Not really any big deal.
Then, in January of this year I got my first "bad one"
The first round of anitbiotics came and went. The swelling, and lets not forget pain, went down, but not away. But the medicine was gone, so I thought all was "ok"
A few days later, it looked like I had a golfball in my cheek. And the pain, holy shit. I don't know how I worked, but I did. I kept a cup with saltwater in it, and rinsed, or kept the saltwater in my mouth almost constantly.
Finally, I got it to go away. And the doctor gave me an antibacterial rinse to use, and I used that religiously, because lets face it, its really hard to brush broken teeth.
I went thru another bad infection like that one, just a month later.
Somewhere in this timeframe, is when my front teeth started to chip, and that REALLY made me feel bad, because up until then, the front ones were the only ones I'd let show. So now, what was I gonna do????

The last one I had, was the worst.
At the point that I saw Dr. Leinessar, I had been taking clindamycian, for TWO WEEKS, and my mouth KEPT SWELLING.
It was a monday, when I made an 'emergency' appt to see him. He was about the only one I hadn't seen in town, and was getting ready to go out of town for care, but thought Id give him a try first.
I called in sick to work,
at this point, I could hardly move, and I was just absolutely miserable. I had a fever, and I knew I was getting ready to die for sure.
He instructed me to DOUBLE the amount of antibiotics, and wanted to know if the swelling didnt go down within another 48 hours.
I had xrays done, a full 180 degree one, at his office.
He showed me how much disease was under what was left of my teeth. It was just, ,,,,,,,,, breath taking.
That morning, he saw me for that emergency appointment, he talked to me for over an hour. Going over different 'treatment' plans and options.
And he didn't even get scared when I told him that I was  a drug addict, in recovery. He actually congratulated me!!
That was in the beginning of March.

I'm nervous, and excited.
I wont ever have to worry about rotten teeth again. Well, I'll still have the five 'anchor' teeth on the bottom, that fit with my partial. But believe me, I'll know when to go see the dentist!!!

I'm so relieved I wont have to try not to laugh at something for fear of my (rotten)teeth showing. I wont have to shop according to what I can chew, or smile with not letting my mouth open.
It takes alot of work you know, to learn to talk and smile half way without showing any teeth.
Now, I'll have to re-learn how to 'let it go'

Im thinking that part will be easy, after my gums are done being sore. Now, I know I'll probably be a little self conscious about it at first too, the dentist said I'll pretty much have to learn to talk again. He said words like chair, share, roof will be hard at first, but to practice when Im alone, and I'll have it in no time at all.
I sure hope so!!!
You know, I'll take the re-learning to speak any day of the week, over the alternative.

This has been quite a process. And it wont be over just with next friday's appointment, because I'll more than likely need a few 'relines' done too. But Dr. Leinessar's office is open until 6 pm two days a week, and at 7am the other two days, so its more that great I can make appointments outside of my work hours. He even decided to take appointments next friday, because he's usually not open that day of the week, but I requested it. The last two times I got teeth pulled I had to take thursday afternoon off and friday. This time around, he's coming in on friday for me.

My son already knows how to floss his teeth! And he wants to brush them almost every time he eats anything!!! Which is just fine with me.
He's seen all the stitches in my mouth two different times now, and I think he could tell it hurt. I told him the entire time thats what happens if you don't take good care of them. Hopefully somebody can learn from this!!

I'm still very nervous!!!!
Hoping they look really good, and feel comfortable, though I'm sure it will take some getting used to. Right now I'm used to mostly gums in there!

Thanks for listening, and cant wait to post pictures of everything.

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