I’m really not sure what the heck is going on in my life that the last month or two has been so tumultuous but that trend seems to be continuing. A visit to the (studiously avoided) dentist last week revealed that my teeth continue to get progressively worse.

And now, a short trip through my dental history

When I was about 8 or so, I had an accident on my bike caused by attempting to look cool and using no hands to steer the bike. It ended in blood, stitches and a tooth that had to be pulled. Ever after, my teeth were kind of a mess.

Mom and Dad did everything ‘rents are supposed to do and took me to an orthodontist where I was told that I needed major braces (we’re talking head gear, night gear, the works). What 13 year old girl wants that news? None. And especially not this one.

As it was coming closer to the D-date, my father’s health (never very good anyway) took a turn for the worse and my mom was very preoccupied with taking care of him. I was often left to my own devices and so it was with this. I remember her asking me “Do you want this or not?” and of course, I chose NOT. Et voila! No braces, no hassle.

Ya reaps what ya sows

Many years later, I regret that decision with all my heart. My teeth were never very healthy, my gums less so. I did this and that, had teeth pulled and adjusted but learned to live with pretty unattractive teeth. Most of the time, I was used to them but now and again, I’d take a good look and shock myself. In fact, it’s a big part of why I didn’t want to shoot video for PI – I am that self-conscious about it.

About three years ago, on a routine visit to the nice dentist here, I learned that allllll manner of dental work had to be done. (“You didn’t win the teeth lottery” he gently told me.) Pull this one, get a bridge here, implants there, blah blah blah.

And in typical Lisa fashion, I decided to ignore it because what a pain in the ass, right?

Well, waiting has (as usual) done me no favors.

I learned last week that at least three teeth have to be pulled and where they’re located will make it hard to place a workable bridge. There’s always implants, gum resurfacing and what they call “mouth rehabilitation”. YEY! Rehab to the tune of about $30,000 and a lot of yukky visits and drillings and stuff.

Dentures1

The other option is …. (wait for it) dentures. Yep, pull all the crap teeth and give me a brand new set along with realigning my jaw in some way. Isn’t that fun? Gosh, I think so!

(SIGH)

As you can imagine, I’m not too excited about any of those options but because I waited, my choices are between rock and a hard place.

The denture option is probably the best of it all because no more trying to save unsaveable teeth only to have to go this route anyway after spending a butt-load of money on it. And it will be the best choice for my poor gums.

Still, I haz a sad.

It’s by my own sucky choices motivated out of fear of pain and general feelings of uckiness with teeth stuff that I’m here. If I could go back in time, I’d get those braces for sure.

Until I’ve learned to ably go back and forth across the time/space continuum, however, I’m stuck with having all the teeth in my head removed, replaced with pretty new dentures (and I’ll be able to let go of the self-consciousness so that’s a big WIN) and endure all the ick in between.

Bright side, baybee. Bright side.

5 Responses to The fun never stops!

  1. Julie says:

    Lisa, can you do the dentures for 6 months while the implants seed and then do the implants as the permanents? I have been through a lot of drilling/caps and real misery the last few years (and I HAD braces, but a bad orthodontist, so sometimes it doesn’t even matter) and yes it was expensive as all heck. Really feeling for you here.

    • Lisa says:

      It’d have to be ALL implants and that’s just gonna cost way too much. I’ll be seeing the dentist this am so I’ll check into that option and see costs but this is probably the way to go for now. I am SO not up for this. (Thanks for your support and love!)

  2. Jody says:

    This makes ME sad. But, yes, we have to try and accept — perhaps there is something awfully wise and wonderful about this situation, which you’ll discover. I’m so sorry, Lisa. Love you.

  3. Sounds like the big decision was made when you were too young to understand the ramifications of it, so you just have to forgive yourself. (I know, easier said than done.) And, for what it’s worth, I had the braces, complete with rubber bands, and the headgear and the retainer. My front teeth are no long bucked (I thought I looked attractively like Bobby Kennedy but my parents emphatically disagreed) and my bite is fine. BUT all the teeth that had the top-to-bottom bands in the back required root canals because the cement my orthodontist used in the early 1970s weakened enamel. It was so new that no one understood the long-term impact. It strikes me as staggeringly unfair that I spent all of my time and my parents’ money as an adolescent getting my teeth fixed, and then had to spend all my own time and my own money getting them fixed again. My point being: even if you’d had them taken care of back then, you might still be here. Another reason to give yourself a break.

    • Jody says:

      @That Girl Herself: yes, exactly. Or, as with my sister, the orthodontist may have done a terrible job in other ways. Then she was in a car accident, and the two front teeth were knocked out anyway (after suffering through years of the braces). It is what it is, but I’m still so sorry, Lisa.