I forgot to tell you why I got my tooth pulled. How could I leave out this detail? It must have been the novocane. It’s the number 13, which is the third molar from the back of my upper teeth, on the left-side of my face. My favorite tooth! Dr. Nichols told me that he believed that its removal would best ensure that my fang stay put. Otherwise, my teeth were just too crowded.
But if I had braces done the right way, when I was a kid, this wouldn’t have been an issue. Just how do you have braces done the wrong way, you might be wondering. Well, it’s not that they were really wrong, but my mom just cut corners, because she thought it was all a big waste, anyway. We went through my dentist, who was not a licensed orthodontist. He was thousands of dollars cheaper than real orthodontists. And then, I only had braces on my top teeth, and then, when all was said and done, I never got a retainer. And when the tooth started its migration back north, Dr. Lee grabbed an electric drill to file it down. Like that worked.
I had another option, if I really wanted to save this tooth, which was to wear headgear. I thought this seemed like a great idea — think of my blog! — but Dr. Nichols said that adults never wear their headgear.
Dr. Ghiassi says that getting a tooth pulled is also a lot like instant weight loss.
I should have taken the tooth home with me for a proper burial. It was a healthy tooth, no cavaties, with a strong root. “Good-bye, old tooth,” I said quietly. “You served me well. I guess you’re going into the garbage now. Be well.”
I fought back the tears in Dr. Ghiassi’s office, hiding my face behind a month old issue of Star magazine, my swollen left cheek filled with gauze.
I know that if my mom were to read this, she’d say, “Once again, it’s my fault.” But she’d be reading too much into it. There are worse things.