It’s done!

“Thank you. I had a wonderful time.”

My sincere and heartfelt expressed sentiments to the endodontist staff as I depart.

It was a wonderful root canal. Really.

As mentioned before, the injections, the procedure, they don’t bother me.

It’s the dental dam (and for which I’d prepared with a sedative).

The key — the happy key! — is that unlike the last black latex damn that was unfurled, stretched across the bottom half of the face and locked behind the ears — dental school, apparently where they’re learned in torture techniques! — today’s was tautly isolated around the tooth with the frame extending across the face only to the nose.

Thus there was room to breathe through the mouth, move the tongue and most importantly swallow. Also, much of the latex extending past the frame was trimmed, resulting in a dam that was neither overly oppressive or suffocating.

Like this but because it’s a posterior molar the frame extended on just beyond the nose:

Me - without the male body and dam stretching as wide across

Kudos and credit to the assistant and her expertise! Root canals is all they do. They’ve got the dam down!

With the worst part over, the doctor proceeded, using for his sighting a magnifying tool mounted on a swivel arm, which I’d never seen before.

Placing his eyes on the padded eye rest — akin to those at optometrist offices — atop a magnifying unit approximately the size of a large football on the swivel arm, he set to work drilling, probing canals, excavating and inserting a bleachy medicine with a syringe.

“There’s a lot of infection,” he said.

“I know,” I mumbled, tongue reaching for the roof of my mouth behind the latex curtain to form the words.

He wasn’t chatty but did answer my occasional questions about how it was looking. I like to be informed; I need direct communication and to be involved.

After the roots were excavated, additional bleachy medicine was poured down to the tip and the canals/tooth filled with a temporary filling rather than the permanent gutta percha. Given the remaining infection, to seal now is inviting disaster.

The medicine is allowed to sit for the purpose of eradicating infection in tissue and bone not accessible via a root canal for 2-4 weeks.

In three weeks, I return for assessment and X-ray. At that time, we’ll know whether the molar can be saved or other more extensive root surgery is required.

A little over an hour, the metal clasp around molar was loosened, the latex curtain raised and I was done! For the time being. Instructions were given, a prescription provided and I was on my way cheerful and uplifted.

A lot of infected gunk found release through opened channels today. I feel lighter. Joyfully relieved that a molar needing care for two years+ has finally received it.

And ready to scream as the Novacaine wears off! Yoooooooowwwwwww!!!!

Lots of water and Ibuprofen in my future diet! This is gonna be a slow long recovery. I can feel it.

A big thank you to Dr. Burquest, assistant Samantha and the staff. It’s through your skills, integrity, competency, techniques and experience that a wonderful root canal was enjoyed. Genuinely!

Now I must take leave of this layover Starbucks and you and simply get not-home and lie down with a heating pad or ice pack to jaw. Yooooooooowza!

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6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. inaformerlifeanexpat
    Aug 23, 2011 @ 03:04:24

    Have never seen one of those before. With the inflection somewhat taken care of, I am sure you feel much better.

    Reply

    • allycatadventures
      Aug 23, 2011 @ 13:35:29

      @Expat – Yeah, in the U.S., dental dams are standard for root canals (as well as some other procedures). If ever you’re at an endo who doesn’t use one, run! The tooth’s certainly feeling better — since now it feels nothing! Still plenty of infection in tissues and bone to go around. That will ultimately determine the molar’s fate and outcome. Time will tell.

      Reply

  2. lexiemom
    Aug 23, 2011 @ 08:50:44

    Yay! I’m glad you are (relatively) pain free now. I hope it takes care of the infection and this will be the last procedure you will need done. Good luck!

    Reply

    • allycatadventures
      Aug 23, 2011 @ 13:42:27

      @lexiemom – Thanks! To iterate, the infection extends beyond tooth. The root canal removes the primary originating source; the infection is widely spread into tissues and bone and presents stage 2. More will be known at next month’s endo follow-up. Until then, it’s a matter of time and process.

      Reply

  3. fatcatfromvox
    Aug 23, 2011 @ 11:39:16

    I hope that solves it – and that the pain stops soon! Good on you for getting it done!

    Reply

    • allycatadventures
      Aug 23, 2011 @ 13:48:24

      @fatcat – It does not solve it, no. Because of the advanced infection and destruction, a simple root canal does not resolve the situation. Unquestionably, however, it was the essential and critical necessity without which no hope or chance of recovery could occur. Stage 1 is completed; now is begun stage 2.

      Reply

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