Tuesday, December 5, 2006
no pain no gain
just returned from the dentist's office. what a workout!

first, the elevators were so crowded at the lexington avenue station that i had to walk about seven flights of stairs to make my connection to the number 6 train.

i actually arrived early for my appointment. so after finishing my su doku and half of a crossword puzzle, we began the consultation for invisalign.

the first thing they do is take pictures of you. just you, not smiling. just standing against a wall, one shot full on and another in profile. "piece of cake," i thought to myself. (note to self, once you think something is a piece of cake, it usually gets much, much harder.) then, they have you sit in a chair while they retract your lips with an appropriately named tool called a lip retractor. after a few shots like that, they stick a mirror in your mouth along with the lip retractors (two of them) for some more photos.

the next thing they have you do is sit in the dental chair. for more pictures. with the lip retractors, bigger mirror and a couple of fingers holding anything else they could cram in there out of the way for the photo. then it got worse. they had a hard time get the proper angle for my uppper teeth. they called in a third woman to help. so i had two large lip retractors, a large mirror, two fingers. and i was upside down. yes, upside down. they had to position the chair so far back. not a normal position to be in at the dentist. and yes, they took more pictures.

but wait, there's more! the next step is to do impressions. i've never done this before. i had a feeling it would be kinda gross. it wasn't too bad except i kept thinking that some of the impression material was sliding back down my throat and i thought i would surely choke to death all in the name of vanity. but i didn't. i did, however, have a mini freak out when they pulled the impression out of my mouth for the upper teeth. the material is rubber-ish, so it creates a tight seal that needs to be broken. i thought she was going to pull the bonding right off my broken front tooth. the lower impression was much easier. then there was a third impression that was the easiest of them all.

because i am a glutton for punishment, i had them do my cleaning after the invisalign torture chamber. i wan't upside down, but there was much scraping and checking, poking and prodding and examining. i hate when they take that little hook thing and pull at the fillings. i swear they do it just to make trouble. which they did because they found two older fillings that will need to replaced eventually.

for the grand finale, they polished my teeth. not with the usual gritty mint tooth polish but with a pressurized baking soda solution. it is like sandblasting your teeth. and it gets everywhere.

the good news is that i didn't have a cavity!

after the first of the year, i'll go back and see a video of how my teeth will look once the procedure is completed and i'll probably get the sticker shock of how much it will cost.


Blogger Andie said...

I've had plenty of impressions, the first thought that came to mind was yuck! You do kind of gag. And yes, it is a pain in the a-- to get out of your mouth. Well, how'd it go? Did you get them yet? can't wait for the next installment.

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