Thursday, May 5, 2011

Argh! Kill it! Kill it!

Feliz cinco de mayo, todos.  I hope that you're reading this with a Margarita in-hand.  (I don't care if it's before noon.  It's very important that we celebrate Mexico's independence.  I know I wish I was drinking right now.

So, I'm gonna come clean, here.

I've not been having the best week.

Since Sunday, my adhesion pain has been hitting me pretty intensely, and has been more constant than since before my last surgery.  It hasn't gotten quite to the curled-up-on-the-bathroom-floor-uncontrollably-vomiting-and-screaming-that-this-is-worth-than-childbirth stage, but it's definitely been more troublesome than it has been in a long time.

The best way I can describe it is to use the illustration of a fork sticking into spaghetti, and then twisting it so it gets all wrapped around the twines.  My insides are the spaghetti.  (Sorry if you'd planned on eating Italian tonight, but not really, because it's cinco de mayo and you should be eating tacos.)

Because I have zero interest in going back on heavy-duty pain meds, and even less interest than that in getting cut open again, my attempts at pain management have consisted of trying to keep a positive attitude and not let on to anyone else how bad I'm feeling.  I figure, if I don't complain about it, it's probably not that bad.

So I've been starting my day with positive little self-affirmations:  I'm going to have a good day today; I won't have any pain; Only I can decide my attitude; blah blah blah.  And, on the surface at least, it has worked.  I've kept a smile plastered on.  Unfortunately, because I'm keeping all bottled up, I keep snapping at the little things, like shrieking and cursing at my poor scared dog when no one is around because, seriously Tasha, I can't take you barking at every single person who goes by outside, it's like needles in my brain.


So, I was already a little tense when I noticed something weird going on with my teeth while I was brushing after lunch yesterday.

Barely visible unless I stretch my mouth open wide, and pull my cheek away from my teeth, on my back molars, there's a little line of black along the gumline.  And it was not there before.

Even when you're not in chronic pain and strung out on your own attempted good cheer, black on your teeth is something you're going to freak out about.  Especially if you're like me, and rinse with mouthwash, floss, and brush after every meal, doing all three of those things, in sequence, a bare minimum of twice a day.

I told my husband to pick me up one of those little plastic sticks with a small round mirror at one end and a metal pick at the other when he went to get the groceries that afternoon.  He called me later from the store and told me that they didn't sell those, the pharmacist said only dentists use those, and they get them from a supplier.  I told him that was ridiculous, that every person I knew over the age of 70 had a plastic cup in their bathroom with at least 8 of the things.  Because he's used to my crazy, my husband brought home a bag of plastic toothpick/floss holders to appease me.

And I went to work attacking that thin line of black.  I rinsed with mouthwash.  I picked it.  I scrubbed it till my gums bled.  But it seemed to be stained onto my teeth.  Nothing would even make a dent on it.

In a panic, I convinced myself that I had somehow gotten cavities under my gumline, that my teeth were rotting from the roots up, and that I would end up having a full plate of dentures before I was 30, like that poor girl who managed the gas station near my old job.

In desperation, I paged Dr. Google.

And, oh.  It turns out it's something called "black line stain".  It's not indicative of a problem (besides having freaking black on your teeth), and it's relatively common.

Especially in women.

And especially in women with excellent oral hygiene.

In fact, the cause could even be an excess of flouride, and people with this type of discoloration have actually been proven to be more resistant to cavities.

So...thanks internet search engine, I feel a little better now.

I mean, it doesn't change the fact that my teeth have freaking black on them, even if I'm the only person who ever notices it.  But I am relieved that I don't have to spend the money or time or pain visiting a dentist, and that I'm not going to be wearing false teeth any time soon.

But, seriously, did I have to find them when I was already having such a crappy week?

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