So as it turns out, new dentist=new fillings, and weekly visits for over a month (to the point that the staff jokes that it’s me again). Who knew that all these years later, the fillings I had done would need replaced. Apparently composite fillings, though they look nice, only last between 5-7 years.
As I sit with my mouth pried open, I can’t help but feel like Alex from A Clockwork Orange. You know, the scene where he’s strapped into a chair with his eyelids propped open, as he’s forced to watch violent images in an attempt to reform him. I think it’s safe to say, I do not like going to the dentist.
Especially the part with the drill and the water, and that feeling of panic where I can’t swallow, or breathe. As hard as I try to remain calm and breathe through my nose, I’m really only a second away from a total freak-out.
It’s like scuba-diving for the first time. Feeling like you’re going to run out of air, but trying not to. The more you think about it, the faster it seems you use up your oxygen.
It’s like getting a tattoo. The buzzing of the needle as it injects the ink under your skin. A sensation that’s a cross between a scratch and a burn. It’s an annoying feeling that you want to make stop, but realize you put yourself in this position, they’ve already started, and you can’t turn back now.
I mean, it’s not excruciating pain after the numbing. The needle the dentist stabs into your gums probably hurts the worst. It’s what comes after, the strange feeling of drowning in your own saliva.
I sit and think about what it feels like as they work away, making shop talk over my open mouth. I question whether or not my mouth is open far enough (after all, I can’t feel it), if my breath stinks, or if my tongue is staying out of the way. Do other people think about this kind of stuff?
I’m no sissy-type for sure and have a high tolerance to pain. However, dental procedures cross the line of awkward-too-close-for-comfort-moments-in-my-mouth.
I have decided that I would rather get a tattoo any day.