08 Apr

trip to the dentist

I hate travelling.

Yesterday I was due to get three wisdom teeth removed. One was partially sideways, one was slightly overgrown causing occasional cheek biting, and the other was so close to the jaw hinge that it was impossible to clean.

The appointment was at noon, in Newry, which is only about 25 miles east of where I am.

In order to get there in time, I had to catch a bus at twenty to seven from Bus Éireann. which would change half-way to another bus which would finally arrive in Newry about 10.15. The next bus from them would have arrived at 12:15, so I had to get that one.

I got up at 5am, got dressed, the usual, grabbed a book (The Last Master: Passion and Glory – Volume 3, a fictional Beethoven biography by John Suchet) and left.

Got to the bus station at 5 past 6, so had to wait around for 35 minutes. Better early than late.

6:40 came and went, and there was no bus. Finally, I called Bronwyn and asked her to check the journey planner again. Turns out I’d totally misread the times (7:40, not 6:40) so was still an hour early. I got a cup of tea and waited.

At 7:40, I went out and there were two buses there. I went to the first one which said it was going to Dundalk, and asked if I should get that one if I’m going to Newry. He said no, and pulled out of the station.

I asked the other bus, and he said “you should have gotten the Dundalk bus”.

When I asked the receptionist if there was another on the way, she said I could catch the Ulster Bus in a few minutes. It was to change at Armagh to go to Newry.

The bus arrived and I was finally on my way. The bus’s number was 70. In Armagh, there was a wait of about 40 minutes before I got on the second bus, which was also a number 40.

Finally arrived in Newry, still an hour and a bit early, so I searched arround to find the place I was going, and made sure it was okay for me to go get some food and drink before the jaw ripping began.

As I wasn’t going to be sedated, there were no special rules, so I went and got a sandwich and continued with the book.

At 12, I came back, and the operation began. An X-ray was taken of my head, even though one had already been taken months ago, and the dentist explained exactly what was going to happen. She was not going to remove the overgrown tooth in that session, but would remove the other two.

So it began. The first injection of anaesthetic involved three pin-pricks. I don’t like needles. Within a minute or two, the area was numb and she went in with the tools to work on the first tooth, and upper right wisdom tooth.

She poked and pushed with what felt like a small crowbar. There was a *crack* sound which I heard right through my head, and within seconds, the tooth was out. I hadn’t felt any pain at all. If this was how it was going to be, then I didn’t know what all the fuss was about.

The second tooth was going to be a tricky one. Apparently because of how it had grown, and how close it was to the mandibular nerve, the tooth would need to first be cut in two. Otherwise, it would increase the already 10% chance of me getting Parasthesia (damaged nerve, sometimes permanent, causing loss of sensation in lips and tongue. Can cause symptoms such as drooling and constant tongue biting).

Fine – get on with it. The first had been simple. The second can’t be so hard.

The drilling started. Within seconds I had to stop. The area was not fully anaesthetised and it was goddamned painful. i was jabbed a few more times with the needle.

Even after that, there was still pain. The dentist figured that the pain was coming from /inside/ the tooth, so probed around to find the best place to apply more jabbing.

After a while, she was able to continue without me feeling the need to thrash around. In a minute or so, she managed to extract the tooth in two pieces.

I got to keep the upper one (stuck it in my pocket). The lower was in bits.

So anyway – I was advised to go get some soft or liquid sustenance and avoid any hard food. After I had some soup, I went to the bus station to wait for the number 40 back to Armagh. It was 3.15. I hadn’t bothered checking the bus-time-tables because I figured I’d be waiting there anyway, so why bother…

After an hour or so, the 40 arrived and I got on it.

After another hour or so, it pulled into the station. The /same/ station I had gotten on at! It turns out that even though it was the same bus route, at some times during the day, they change it so that it becomes a 2-bus route. I was apparently supposed to get off at one point and switch to another bus, but had not been aware of it.

I had to wait another hour for another 40. Finally arrived in Armagh about 6.30. The guy at the bus station said that the next bus to Monaghan was at about 8pm.

I waited around for a half-hour then gave up and got a taxi home.

All in all, it took me about fourteen hours to leave the house, get some teeth removed, and get back home.

I was asked to come back next month to get the other wisdom tooth removed. I think I’ll leave it a while longer before doing that. The surgery itself was fine, but the trip was a pain.

2 thoughts on “trip to the dentist

  1. I’ve encountered similar pain on my local transit. In fact it has long been known as the “Toronto Chance-It”.

    I’ve since toured a lot of the world and the name rings true in many cities.

    BART (Bay Area Rapid Chance-It)
    NJT (New Jersey Chance-It)
    MT (Miami Chance-It)
    (Metro Chance-It) (found in several cities!)

    I’d be very happy with a great mass-transit system – I’ve just yet to find one. 😉

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