[Graphic Content: Read at Your Own Risk]
So last Tuesday, I went to work at night and took the day after off because I needed to see my dentist. It was supposed to be only a check-up but I considered taking the day off because I would surely lack sleep in the morning which is not a good idea because I work at night.
Our appointment was supposed to start at 9AM but he was busy so I had to wait until past 10AM. When he arrived, he asked me a few questions about my medical history and he had me signed a consent form.
Afterward, he ushered me to the dental chair while his assistant started to clip a cloth over my collar. I was completely taken aback. I didn’t know the operation would be today! I wasn’t ready. I hadn’t slept that night, I hadn’t eaten a heavy breakfast, and I was PMSing because it was the first day of my week.
Damn! I didn’t know what to do. I was fucking nervous but all I wanted was to get this over with so I can eat well in the days, months, and years to come without an impacted tooth that I keep seeing in my vision whenever I bite my food.
Instead of backing out, I asked the doctor if the dental surgery would be done today and we both laughed at my stupid question. “Of course,” he said.
So in order to calm myself, I went out for a bathroom break and talked to myself in front of the mirror. All I had in mind was for this operation to be done so I gathered all my guts and pushed through with it even if I was half-awake because 10AM is already past bedtime for a night-shift worker like me. My dentist even worried that I would pass out once the anesthesia is injected because I hadn’t slept.
Then I came back and let the games begin!
How It’s Done?
Injection of Local Anesthesia
First things first, your dentist will inject local anesthesia to your gum tissue. I don’t fear needles or any medical equipment or my own blood (because I basically grew up around medical practitioners since both my parents and most of our relatives work in a hospital) but then I noticed that the needle they used to inject anesthesia inside my mouth (gum tissue) is really big. It’s different from the ones dermatologists use to inject collagen/antibiotic to your face (based on my observation) and almost similar to what medical technicians use to extract blood from your veins.
As for the difference of local anesthesia to other anesthetics, it is often used to affect only a restricted part of the body, in this case, the left part of my jaw. Thank God after the operation, I didn’t feel any drowsiness as what my dentist have previously worried about.
A Moment of Silence
I would just like to share that after the injections were done and while we were waiting for it to take effect (to numb my jaw) I saw my dentist and his assistant looked down to pray. So I did the same. I really appreciate it. It only shows that they really care about their patient.
Make Incision on the Gum Tissue
Afterward, when my jaw was already numb, he reached for the sterilized dental knife and forceps to cut my gum tissue. I was amazed that I didn’t feel any pain at all. The needles even hurt more than the incision. I couldn’t see how lengthy the incision was but he mentioned while he was doing the stitches that it’s a long one.
Since my wisdom tooth is impacted, he had to break off the crown so that he could see where the root is. It didn’t hurt that much. But I felt all the force and drilling that he made to cut the uppermost layer of my tooth. Again, I owe all these pain-free feeling to the local anesthesia. How I wish I could get them all the time. 😛
Remove the Crown
As soon as he has successfully divided the tooth, he scooped the crown off my mouth. Then they used a dental suction to drain all the saliva and blood that came off my gums. He said that I was nervous that’s why I lost a lot of blood. And it’s not even the whole tooth yet!
Remove the Tooth Root
Here comes the best part (insert sarcasm here). I was shook. The roots are too deep. He’s been digging and digging and changing tools for less than five minutes before he finally scooped it out. His aid even had to hold my head still because he was forcing the tooth out. Once it’s there in the open, I felt nothing but relief. I wasn’t hurt. I was more glad than tired (though I should be because of lack of sleep and blood). I even got up a bit to look at the tooth on the table and I took a picture of it. Gawd it’s a full-grown tooth but it hasn’t erupted for centuries that’s why I’ve been in pain for more than a year! The aid even told me to keep it and crash it with a hammer to avenge myself from the pain it caused me. But I’m not Thor to do that, so nevermind. 😛
Clean the Site
There goes the dental suction, draining all the blood and saliva from my mouth.
Stitch Gum Tissue
And my not-so-favorite part. I kinda felt the needle and thread going in and out of my gum tissue. Sucks, right?
Place Gauze Over Extraction Site
After the operation, it is important that you bite the gauze for 30 minutes to one hour to block the blood from pouring out the extraction site because it will result to dry socket–which should be avoided since it could lead to painful complications.
I was also advised to avoid spitting, gurgling, using straw, and performing strenuous activities because any impact can open the wound and dry the socket out of blood. A cold compress should also be applied for 15 minutes, every three hours. Lastly, watch out for the food because I can only eat soft and cold food within 24 hours.
Soooo, I hope you guys learned something today! If you are planning to see a dentist or an oral surgeon for your wisdom tooth extraction, do not be afraid to take the first step. The operation is not that painful. Just be positive! Think about all the food you can eat when there’s no impacted wisdom tooth blocking your way toward achieving your favorite hobby: eating. 😉