Knock on wooden teeth, but outside of the dentist’s office, I have never had an x-ray. I’ve never broken a bone or had any major health issues that necessitated one. In the dentist’s office, however, I’ve had plenty. Plenty of x-rays, plenty of novocaine shots, plenty of teeth pulled, plenty of cavities filled. My teeth are really bad. I’ve gone without health insurance for extended periods of time but I do not go without dental insurance. Except when I lived overseas, but any sort of medical work done outside of the US is reasonably priced, so there’s no need.

Part of why I had so many teeth pulled is because my mouth is simply too small. If I hadn’t had them pulled, they’d be sticking out every which way. So I’m grateful for all those hours in the dentist’s chair when I was a kid, even if they didn’t have the topical anesthesia back then. I felt every millimeter of the needle going into my jawbone over and over. Brutal. But I amaze my dentist (or the hygienist, to be accurate) now at my tolerance for pain while she scrapes and jabs and pokes. None of that fazes me. Continue reading →