Thursday, September 13, 2012

By The Skin Of My Teeth...

Dental health has always been a big deal to me.
Back in the day, my folks would take my younger brother and I to the dentist together. He would go in first, and it always seemed liked he never had any problems. So, when it was my turn, I figure the dentist knew he only had one more chance to make some cash, so he generally found a way to make my life miserable. My brother would giggle his ass off! We still talk about it these days and he can’t help but smirk about it.
When I finally lost all of my baby teeth, I made the decision to take better care of myself, mostly because I had been scared stiff so many times as a kid! Funny how that works, eh?
Then along came my junior and senior hockey days. Back then, (this would be the early to mid 1980’s), I just loved tossin’ the gloves off and throwin’ bombs. I could definitely take a punch...just ask my opponents! But, I got through it all without losing any teeth! Sure a couple of broken noses, but geezuz those were good times!
The whole notion of taking care of my teeth over the years kind of came to a head today during my consultation with the dental oncologist at the BC Cancer Agency in Kelowna. I was worried about anything going wrong, like a cavity or two that could have resulted in my treatment being delayed. I have been so impatient with all of this over the past few weeks that any more waiting would’ve drove me completely nuts.
Sep. 13: Checking out the x-rays, which confirmed there are no problems! This keeps everything moving on schedule.
Sounds like any grief with teeth before and after radiation treatments can be serious stuff. I understand that teeth and bones don't mend worth a damn in many cases, so any kind of oral surgery after radiation can be sketchy at best. Keeping everything clean during treatment is also pretty important, but apparently some folks cannot even bear to put a toothbrush in their mouths toward the end of their radiation treatment schedule. Just too painful, I'm told. So, I'm not sure what that means for me.
Sep. 13: No, it's not a "soother"! It's a "flouride tray". These are for use at home during treatment to make extra sure my teeth stay clean. The trays are just like mouthguards we used playing sports. The stuff used to make a mould of my teeth is just gross!
Bloodwork at KGH on Friday, then a consult with a medical oncologist on Monday. That's the chat about chemotherapy. Good times ahead!
More info to come...

1 comment:

  1. Had the same experience many times getting a mouthguard made! Feels like you're going to vomit!