Saturday, June 19

Pain, Orthodontics, and Ditzy Women

I am in pain. Seriously, I'm not joking. It feels like someone is pulling my teeth out half a millimeter at a time, with a pair of pliers. Like I said, Ow.

To understand my pain (and why I'm feeling it) I should start at the beginning of my story instead of the end. I had braces, HAD. I got those horrible metal torture devices off yesterday. After 2 years of dare I say, absolute purgatory, I am free. Why am I still in pain, you may ask? Well...

I was jolted out of sleep by the blaring of a radio somewhere inside the middle of my ear. Rubbing the sleep from my eyes, I realized the alarm clock wasn't actually inside my head. Relieved, I turned if off and glared at the faintly luminous numbers. I am most definitely NOT a morning person, and 6 am is pure suicide. I got out of bed feeling fairly out of it and definitely not all there. The orthodontist was a sadist, I decided. He delighted in torturing me by making me get up for a 7:20 am appointment. I didn't even know they were OPEN at 7:20.

Somehow, and seriously I have NO recollection, I got ready and because my parents are heartless and enjoy my suffering just as much as my orthodontist, I walked the 20 minutes to my appointment. When I am fully awake, walking is child's play. Asleep, it is slightly more difficult. I'm surprised I was not hit by a car or mugged by...well, someone.

Miraculously, I made it and got safely seated by the...whatever those people are called who do everything to your teeth. Orthodontic Assistant? I quickly decided that this particular OA was a flake, if not a complete ditz. I'm not being cruel or exaggerating. As I held my mouth wide open for her better access to my pearly whites, she poured a steady stream of questions into my ear. Here is a sample of our conversation:

OA: (in a falsely bright voice) "So, I bet your REALLY glad to be getting you braces off right?" (giggles)

Me: "Uh-uh" (spit spews everywhere)

OA: Well, and how is school going for you?"

Me: "Eh eh ooh" (I try manfully to make myself understood as she shoves her fist into the side of my cheek)

OA: "Well, that's good. Do you have plans for the summer?" (grinning cheerfully)

Me: (tears welling in my eyes as she tugs a little TOO hard) "AHHH...uh-huh"

And it goes on...and on...and on. Having exhausted the stream of available questions that she can direct towards me, and having removed the last bracket, she pulls out what looks like a miniature electric sand-paper thingy and proceeds to polish my teeth with it, inflicting a great deal of discomfort, if not pain, on me, AND complaining about the motor for the sanding thingy at least 5 times.

She finishes polishing my teeth, removing the last bit of glue. I go to rinse my mouth out. I look in the mirror and gaze at myself in some shock. My cheeks are covered with blood, and my gums are bleeding profusely. I kid you not. It was disgusting. Apparently, your gums are all swollen and sensitive from the braces so when, as the OA so wittily put it, you even look at them, they bleed. Well, my gums were bleeding and sore.

I hastily scrubbed the dried blood from my cheeks and swished my mouth with water. And then I smiled because my teeth were beautiful (they still are), if I do say so myself. After admiring myself in the mirror for a while, I hurried back. I then got my picture taken several times, and an x-ray. All the while the cheerful OA spewed out a steady stream of comments and instructions. I wanted to do something drastic.

Finally, the orthodontist saw me, gave me the OK and I escaped with my positioner, which is the last word in torture and the reason for my discomfort and pain. It is a big hunk of plastic that fits on to my teeth, holding them in place and moving them slightly. Tweaking, as my OA, ever cheerful, called it. I have to wear it after dinner and to bed, which would explain my bad mood. I woke up last night because of the aforementioned feeling of having my teeth yanked out. Here is a picture, just for you:

I am in pain.


  1. Aww, poor Bethy!!
    I'm about to start that suffering....

  2. owowowowowowowowow!
    I hope your feeling better now!