Thursday, September 16, 2010

Strobe Voices

"Breathe deeply...chest breathe," she told me as she placed the thingy over my nose.  I was in the "operating" chair at the oral surgeon's office, and the assistant was prepping me for the fun that was soon to erupt.  The Nitrous Oxide was my choice, since Novocaine is not entirely enough to allow me to "not care" when someone is extracting a broken molar from my mouth.  I obeyed and breathed my deepest breaths, and before long my head was dizzy and I noticed changes in my hearing.  I focused on thinking about relaxing things.


Before my lungs were filled with the so called, "laughing gas," I was completely unaware of the background music.  However, it suddenly became foreground music in my altered state of awareness, and Olivia Newton- John was singing her heart out in that unforgettable number from "Grease," "Hopelessly Devoted to You."  Now I was a big fan of "Grease" back in the day, but I never heard it quite like this.  This was akin to watching the strobe light version of an act on stage.  It had those peeks and valleys of sound and really gave the song a strange, twisted sound.

And I noticed I could hear the staff talking in other areas, and chattering about what they'd had for lunch, asking the Doctor what to do with a certain file, and such.  These conversations were also delivered in the "strobe sound" mode.  It was a little weird -- kind of like being able to hear everything that is completely meaningless and the strobe sensation giving odd emphasis to unimportant details.  Still, it was interesting.

Having shared with the doctor my past experience with a tooth extraction (horrible) in which I permanently lost the feeling in my lower left part of my mouth, and sharing with him my historical problems with exogenous sources of epinephrine, I was "numbed up" with a product that did not contain the epinephrine.  The flip side to that, I am told, is that its effect does not last as long, but it is what it is, and we proceeded.

I won't say it was the most painful experience I have certainly was not.  I would hardly call it a walk in the park either.  No, for an hour an a half there was pulling, drilling, cracking and other oral surgeon calisthenics.... until, after one last, "are we doing OK, sweetie," from the assistant, answered by my mumbled lies of assurance, the doctor announced his success.

And the assistant instructed me to, "breathe deeply" to get the oxygen into my lungs.

"I've spent the entire day extracting impacted wisdom teeth and THIS extraction was the most challenging," the doctor told me.

"Weely?" I garbled back.

"Yes, you are a big bone producer (figures!) and the roots were hooked at the end.  All the roots came out successfully until the last one and that one made a hole in your sinus....I packed it with soft gel (whatever that is) so it will promote clotting...."

At this point I am seriously wondering what kind of pain I will endure during the next few days....

"Don't blow your nose for a week, sneeze through your mouth, and if you get a cold, take decongestants...but DON'T blow your nose..."

Geez, this is sounding like a lot of fun already....

"If you blow your nose it can make everything pop out and we will have to go back in there and clean it up..."

Oh, joy!

"I'm giving you a prescription for anti-biotic, because this could end up with a sinus infection...."


"Any questions?"

"Yes, is there any concern with my flying on Sunday?"

"No, that shouldn't be a problem..."

Sure, that's what they ALL say!

So, anyway, the doctor told me I'd been an excellent patient in a very difficult extraction and thanked me.  I thanked him and, after waiting until my head had cleared from the nitrous, I was off to get my prescriptions filled.  I finally arrived back home, fat little cheek, jaw clamped shut over the gauze, with jaw and sinus throbbing, four hours after leaving, pain-free, for my appointment.

I was greeted with a completed new window in the stairwell, and most of the new fruit trees planted.  I helped Joe plant four more trees before it grew too dark to work outside.

I "help" by taking photos.....

I made us a little something to eat (my exciting diet of yogurt and pudding offered very little room for imagination) and we turned our focus to cleaning up the indoor construction mess left behind.  We have another hour or so of work left on that one, so I guess I need to get off my "break" and help Joe with the clean-up!

Trash, trash, everywhere trash


Feral Female said...

Ahh nothing like a trip to the oral surgeon. Been there a few times myself! Glad to hear he said you did well during a tough extraction!

Sharon said...

Guess I will put THAT on the back burner for a while......... I need all my top teeth pulled (extracted, cut out, taken away) I already have a sinus infection.

Very descriptive on the surgeon's visit. I only hope I do as well...., for me it's Novocaine or be knocked out in the hospital - because of my lungs.

I suppose about now you really hurt, so sorry, I hope you heal well, with no complications! Hope he's got you on some GOOD drugs too! :-)

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

I worked as an assistant for an oral surgeon for a few years and am glad to see that your visit went as well as it could and I'm glad they had the nitrous--Some of the offices are no longer offering it because of the liability! Take care and I hope you mend with no problems!! Enjoy your weekend!!

Judy's Corner said...

FF, LOL, well I did fine and am recovering well. I guess I just hope none of my other teeth decide to break!

Judy's Corner said...


UGH! I used to live with sinus infections until I had surgery to correct them five years ago. I have not been sick since.....amazing!

Judy's Corner said...

I am actually feeling pretty decent. Ate real food again last night and all is healing well.

Weekend will be busy...carports go in today and tomorrow I fly out for several weeks of the on the road work!

Have a great weekend.

Canyon Girl said...

Poor Judy, I hope you'll feel better soon. I could do with some of that gas myself, since I so hate Naproxen or whatever it's called that I'm supposed to take for my shoulder pain.