Tuesday, June 29, 2010

But Doc…I Don’t Want A Root Canal !!

I started having some weird feelings in one of my upper teeth while we were in Kansas or Colorado (can’t remember).  I hate when I get those weird feelings that aren’t normal in a tooth.  It’s never good news, that’s for sure.  I called our dentist’s office right away and scheduled an appointment for as soon as possible after getting back to Tumwater. 

Unless it would be an absolute emergency, I don’t want any other dentist but our own touching my teeth!  I know some RVer’s have gone to Mexico for dental work and have had great success with that.  I’m just not going to be doing that.  When we moved up to Olympia, Washington in 1994, one of the first things we did was find a dentist.  I called 1-800-DENTIST and was given a full report on Dr. A. Agustin Vega on Harrison Avenue in Olympia.  You get information on everything:  education, background, experience, etc.  You can now do the 1-800 dentist search thing online which is easier.  We called and made an appointment back then and were totally satisfied.  That was it….we found our guy…..good to go now and forever.

So today was my day for Dr. Vega to check out my tooth and give me the diagnosis.  I got the x-ray done and he came and checked it all out on his computer.  Listened to my symptoms and my story.  Given what I told him he figured the tooth was dying….nerve damage or something and I needed a root canal.  I also have some minor bone loss in that area.  So I did not need a crown at this time, just the root canal.   Root canal !!!! Just the words are enough to scare the you-know-what out of me.  Back in 2007 Dr. Vega had to do a root canal and a crown on another of my teeth, so I knew he would be gentle with me.  Still scared though.  I had no time to back out because he had time in his morning schedule to work me in.  Well, isn’t that great, I’m thinking with fear. 

Assistants Katrina and Christina prepared the torture devices…..um..I mean instruments for the surgery.  I surprised them all by saying I wanted to take photos of them.  I had to explain about the whole blog thing and how I try to document stuff from our life and travels.  I still think they all thought I was a bit nuts.  :)


When I was all ready, Dr. Vega came in.  Now…this won’t hurt a bit.  He jabbed me kindly with the giant needle thing to deaden the area where the surgery would take place.   Yowser…that first one hurt a bit, doc.  Fortunately, after that first stick you get numb and don’t feel the others (much). 


While we were waiting for the full effect of the numbing medication to do it’s job, I got out of the dental chair (you know, the kind where you feel like you are almost lying upside down) and took a photo of Dr. Vega and his office staff, Stacey and Barbara. 


Pretty soon the right side of my face was feeling numb and my upper lip felt like it was 3 times the normal size and I knew we were ready for action.  Dr. Vega is a very considerate doctor and he took great care to make sure I was never in any pain.  Once he drilled a hole in my tooth to get access to the nerve, he could see it was in bad shape and there was a lot of inflamation there too.  It was probably on it’s way to getting infected.  Before I knew it he had the dead nerve out and was prepping the hole in my tooth for the final repairs.  In a short time, he was finished and I was as good as new….minus the pain and the bad nerve.

I went out to the desk and took a final photo before saying good-bye and thank you for taking such good care of our teeth for the past 16 years.  See how Dr. Vega and Stacey are all smiles?  That’s because we are good patients and pay our dental bill on time, too.


Going to the dentist has never been the most fun thing for me to do.  But my Dr. Vega is fantastic and he is a nice guy too!

Until next time…..so long for now!


Levonne said...

I love your pictures of Dr. Vega and his staff! Great! And all that while you prepared for a root canal!! This blogging has more benefits that you can shake a stick at. It can take your mind off just about anything!

Rick and Paulette said...

I still think there's nothing scarier than a dentist's office. There's the noise of the drills and that special smell they all have - I think it's fear!! Looks like you've got a good crew there though so that helps. I have to admit, it's been years and years since I've felt any real pain from my dentist but, it's still a scary proposition I don't look forward to.

Glad you got through it all today and didn't have to wait to go back some other day. Less time to think is better!


Haven't been to a Dentist in about 35 years & luckily I will never have to go for another 35 years:))

-Nellie and Jonathan said...

Show us your chompers!

:) LOL!

p.s. Glad I'm not the only one who carries my camera everywhere!


KarenInTheWoods and Steveio said...

What a refreshing post about dentists! Usually all you hear is bashing on fees, health insurance and overbooking and waitingrooms ... so nice to hear about a positive experience. I bet they think you are strange for taking pics of all of them! LOL

Karen and Steve
(Our Blog) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard

Carol K said...

Root canals are never fun. I have had several and know what you are talking about. But Dr. Vega and his able staff seem to have treated you well. Hang in there, Margie!

Jerry and Suzy said...

Suzsy has had at least 5 or 6 root canals, and I've had at least 2 or 3. Suzy says for all but one, she was tearing the fabric off the dental chair, but I didn't have that problem. The chair was solid plastic! Really, I didn't do too badly, but I'm not anxious to try again!

Happytrails said...

So sorry to hear about your tooth and the root canal. They are certainly no fun. Sounds like you have a good dentist and that is sooo important. Someone you trust and takes good care of you. I thought Rick got it right about the sounds/smells of a dentist office.
Take care and glad that its over for you.

Mike & Gerri (happytrails)

Jessica said...

I've "been there, done that" as well - more times than I care to remember! But it sure made for an interesting read :) I've been getting better about hauling my camera around with me, but I don't think I would have thought to take it to the dentist's office. lol

Kenny And Angela's Adventure said...

When I go in for work like that I tell them to give me the gas and then you don't care what they do to you:))

Sam&Donna Weibel said...

Unfortunately or maybe fotunately I lost all but two of my choppers to a gum desease in 2001, I forget the name of it but it is where your teeth come loose from your jawbone and then there is nothing to hold them in, Last year I lost one of the remaining two. I was lucky that when I had my dentures made they did an out standing job and I have had no problems and don't even use any adhesive as they stay tight without it. But there is nothing to compare to real teeth so I am glad you are going to keep yours Margie for a long time. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

Bdubba said...

Hugs to you!! I hate dentists. I need some work done don't have the $$$. One day.....*sigh*

Judy and Emma said...

I hate going to the dentist! It's got to be left over from when I was a kid and they never heard of novacane. :(

How lucky for you to get it all taken care of in only one visit.

Wild Blue Yonder said...

Brave girl!
Take care!

Dinah Soar said...

Wish your Dr. Vega was here...we just got word that our dentist has retired as of this past Monday...a new guy is coming in to take over the practice...I hope he is as good. I hate change and more so when it is a dentist who is gentle and good or a doctor. Lucky you--getting the root canal done right on the spot...beats having it hanging over your head doesn't it.

Chuck and Anneke's RV travels said...

I understand your angst on the dental work. I had to have an emergency root canal in Colorado Springs last summer and it was definitely a challenge to find a good Dentist quickly.

I am impressed that you took the time to get pictures for the blog. I admit that never even crossed my mind. :)