About a month ago, I was having my bi-annual dental check-up and was in for a few surprises. Although I was told that I had no decay, there were several problems that needed repair.
First, the dentist and dental hygentist noticed that one of my older bonds (to a chipped tooth) had fallen off and the chip had enlarged as a result of its location. The problem was that the corner had basically sheared down and had exposed the dentin. I was told that I needed to immediately get this fixed or risk cavities/root canal later.
Secondly, I was told that there were noticeable cracks running through another tooth which had an old filling and another one that was otherwsie in perfect condition. I was told that these just needed to be watched and treated if the cracks got any worse.
Third, when I asked how could this (#2) be and was informed that my teeth were different than the "norm". Apparently, all of my teeth end with relatively sharp points, rather than the rounded corners that most people have. As a result of this, my teeth were under greater strain than what other people experienced and would have a greater chance of cracking. (I guess my family has always been carnivores)
Obviously, none of these things made me happy, especially the fact that I had to get the one tooth repaired immediately even though I had no decay! My problem with that is the needle that is involved...which some may remember, I am deathly afraid of. Either way, I went ahead and got pre-authorization for the procedure and waited until it came through and I would make the appointment.
Last week, I received the paperwork and scheduled the appointment for today. I was told that it would take 1.5 - 2hrs maximum and that it would be done with a "new" method made from pressed porceilan without any waiting/refitting.
At 8:00am this morning, I was sitting in that chair, carrying on like a baby as they impaled me on a damn hypodermic needle to novacaine me to death. After all that fun and waiting for the novacaine to hit, they started to prepare my tooth. During the course of this, it came out that the original thought on how to repair the tooth would not work as the broken area went down too far, so they quickly decided on a different method.
Fast forward a bit...the dentist is now ready to enter in the tooth form, both of the prepared tooth, what it was before it was prepared, and the covering. Unfortunately, his computer program was giving them grief and it took almost an hour of trial and error before the machine was programmed to start milling it. Its now 10:30am (30 minutes after I was supposed to be done) and the machine begins to mill the inlay. The milling process takes 15 minutes plus the new prep time before they start doing the fitting. I am sitting in the chair waiting by myself as I watch time pass by. At 11:20 the hygentist comes in with the rough prepared inlay and says it wont be more than another 10 minutes....right. At this point, I have begun to realize that my mouth is no longer numb and is coming back to life.
At 11:40, they start fitting this thing in and out, shaping, sanding, carving it until its perfect. I am then told that it must be polished before the final fitting. During this process, I tell them that I can clearly feel everything now.
At 12:05, they come back in with the polished inlay and start to do the final preparation for the bonding process. The hygentist puts on this etching/cleaning solution onto the prepared tooth and its like someone took a hot knife and put it directly into my nerve! I'm in fricking hell but just gripping the hell out of the chair until its done. Then they put on some other solution which once again hurt, but not quite as bad. 15 minutes later, the finally finish and let me go, with a badly hurting tooth that will probably be annoying me all day.
All in all, my 1.5 - 2hr procedure ended up taking 4.5 hours! And something that didnt hurt at all when I went in, is now hurting. All because of a chipped tooth/my tooth shape.