I’d been dreading this, my upcoming dental appointment, for months. This is because I knew that today would be a day of reckoning. And I didn’t want to reckon. I just wanted what’s gone bad to right itself. This doesn’t seem to happen with teeth.
I wonder if saints had bad teeth. I wondered if they, and others who believe in miracles were ever able to reverse the good gone bad process. I also wondered if there was a patron saint of teeth, so I looked it up. I discovered that the honor goes to Saint Apollonia. According to Wikipedia, Apollonia was one of a group of virgin martyrs who suffered in Alexandria during a local uprising against the Christians prior to the persecution of Decius. According
The Maryland bridge from dental work past
to church tradition, her torture included having all of her teeth violently pulled out or shattered. For this reason, she is popularly regarded as the patroness of dentistry and those suffering from toothache or other dental problems. French court painter, Jehan Fouquet painted the scene of St. Apollonia's torture in The Martyrdom of St. Apollonia.
Wow. I can’t think of much that’s more horrific. Well, one thing comes to mind, that is, having one’s arms and legs tied to the back end of the horses one loves and the horses being whipped to move forward. I suppose, then, that the first person to experience this would be called the Patron Saint of Drawn and Quartering.
Geez, and they most likely didn’t even give that woman nitrous oxide. How is it that humans can envision doing such a thing, much less, actually do it? We are a race of savages.
Anyhow, I was on time for my morning appointment at Meridian Dental – the order in which things are done actually varied – usually I first have my teeth cleaned, and then they are x-rayed, and then the dentist does his exam. This time, my teeth were first x-rayed, and then the dentist did his exam. After, the hygienist cleaned my teeth. I don’t know why they did it this way. A differing dentist, Dr. Piper, did the exam. I said that I wanted my regular dentist to do the exam, then relented after realizing that, if need be, I could ignore what this guy had to say and then schedule another appointment with my regular dentist, Dr. Gurr.
Well, Dr. Piper told me what I already knew, which is that the fractured tooth (Toothy McTooth) and the reabsorbed tooth (Number Five) needed to go. What it came down to was this – implants.
When asked, Dr. Piper (who by now had won me over because of his very empathetic nature) said that Dr. Gurr could do the implants. Hearing this, I felt relieved for I then realized that the root (no pun) of my anxiety has been the lack of a plan; that is, the unanswered questions were, who would do the implant work and how soon after the extraction?
So, next step, mid-November, I will meet with Dr. Gurr and we will go over all the implant particulars. And so, the March of the Molars continues.
Next: 297. 10/27/21: The Fourth Dimension