Just a simple tooth extraction and bone graft. My inner world can be so chaotic that I ground myself by grinding my teeth in my sleep. A firmly clenched jaw apparently keeps me tethered under the troposphere but also can fracture a molar clear down to the mantle.
- Tip 1: A Doctor’s Nightguard ($30 at retail pharmacies) is cheaper than extraction and implant ($3500).
- Tip 2: An implant costs as much as a family cruise to the Mayan Riviera.
- Tip 3: The Mayan Riveria is a hotter, trendier destination than an oral surgeon’s chair with tools.
- Tip 4: If you are a grinder and haven’t broken a molar yet, buy the mouthguard and treat yourself to a cruise, complete with gourmet lobster dinners and complementary champagne. You deserve it. The only headache you’ll get is a hangover, which actually responds to pain killers and leaves you alone a lot faster.
My dentist says grinders make him very rich.
On the third day waking and barely able to speak, move my head, blink without pain, I went to the ER and enjoyed cruising Curious-George style down corridors for my CT-scan. I wanted to cry out “wheee” and wreak havoc, but I wasn’t up to it.
Could you just decapitate me to relieve the pressure? I asked Mark, the ER doc, who was slightly nervous with Charlie lingering nearby (voted San Diego’s best doc for three years, with the bennie that I get to call all medical personnel by their first names). Mark said that’d bring up other issues.
Trepanation? I countered. No, Mark said, that has side effects, too.
Well, it worked for ancient Mesoamericans. Or maybe not. In the Museum of Man I saw lots of ancient skulls with triangles and squares carved out with the surgical equivalent of Stone Age hand axes; whoever goes through that kind of pressure relief without anesthesia (OK, maybe there was some loco herb involved) must have had a whopper of a headache. Either way, they were gonna die.
I’ve been able to cut back on pain killers these past two days; the splitting disabling headache has turned into vague twinges and mush. I am embarrassingly not sharp. (I can hear my brothers jumping on that one.)
But—yay—I went outside into the garden on Thursday, my first foray out of bed. I propped some weighty steroidal tomato vines, then shuffled right back to that other bed. After two weeks of forced bed rest I have NO core strength left! Wah! It hurts my back to stand or move about for more than 10 or 15 minutes.
I cooked an omelet yesterday and discovered my strength/endurance time can be measured in omelet units. That’s all I’m good for. Back to horizontal!
Poor poor Charlie still has to do ALL the cleanup. Yin-yang: always a silver lining (not to be confused with mercury filling; isn’t it comforting that “mercurial,” after the Roman god Mercury, refers to the erratic, volatile, unstable? My grinding probably trips the Richter).
No silver lining for Chas, working 10- to 12-hour days outside the home. He’ll ask for the next headache.
Yoga? Oh my god. I can only make the last pose. Corpse pose.
I’ll try to show my face at this Saturday’s class, tho I’m not sure my brain can take any pressure. Usually I’m happiest upside-down.
I figure doing lots of omelet-unit reps in household/gardening tasks this week should bring some strength and Charlie back. Can’t wait to go outside and hang.