Life can get in the way of us doing a lot of things, we forget to pick something up from the post office after getting that dreaded red slip through the door, we forget to book in that hair appointment to sort out our roots or trim off that dead hair that’s turning more and more into a dreadlock every day – but what about forgetting (or “forgetting”) to go to the dentist?
I don’t know about you, but I’ve never been good with keeping up my appointments for things, I regularly leave months between hair cuts (sorry Chlo) and am forever picking up parcels from the post office after forgetting during the week once I’ve finished work (when I still had a job anyway lol). So you won’t be surprised to know I left it around FIVE YEARS between my dentist appointments and god damnit, that was a rookie mistake and I’m here to tell you why.
Now, I booked in to have an appointment with a private dentist for a couple of reasons, first being that they were a lot more flexible with their booking slots and I didn’t need to wait weeks for an appointment or come in at some bizarre midday time to see someone, second being that I wanted to have a decent amount of time with someone new and I was far too embarrassed to go back to my old one as it had been such a long time. I also thought I’d still have a job to pay for all of this, but we’ll come on to the pricing in a bit. Here are some snaps of my teeth pre-appointment and any “work” being done (I say the word work loosely as it wasn’t like I was having them whitened or getting Invisalign fitted).
As you can see, there’s some build up of plaque in between my teeth which you probably wouldn’t notice unless you were up in my grill (get it?! 😉) and it wasn’t something a simple teeth whitener could hide. The backs of my teeth were stained badly from my old smoking days and just general wear and tear and I was getting concerned about the state of the rest of them just in case I need to have something shot like a root canal because I had left it for so long.
One thing I would like to address before moving on is the second tooth to the left in the photos – when I was younger living in the States with epilepsy, I was put onto a medication which we were told would completely discolour my teeth (I have no idea what kind of mental medicine this was – but it was the 90’s and I was taking enough to knock out a horse). Fortunately for me it only happened to one of them and I had a little bit of work done to hide it. I had my tooth drilled and filled with the porcelain they normally use for the “invisible” fillings, but I’m sure dentistry has come a long way since then and I’m hoping I can get something done to completely revive the colour.
Anyway, I had my new patient consultation and after some poking, prodding, pictures and x-rays we had a treatment plan and cost for me to follow;
- £44 new patient consultation plus 2 x-rays at around £12 each = £68
- £55 to see the hygienist to get rid of the shit all over my teeth from years of build up
- £98 for a filling at the back of my teeth
- £90 to replace one of my old silver NHS fillings (I was thanking the lord about this one as I hate them, just wish it was the bigger of the two, but what can you do?!)
TOTAL COST FOR NOT SEEING THE DENTIST FOR YEARS = £311
Luckily for me, I don’t really eat sugary shit and have somewhat looked after my teeth (bar the smoking until I quit – 2 and a half years ago whoop!), but if I hadn’t this cost could have been much higher and the work a lot more challenging to sit through than it already was.
I’ve so far only had one of the fillings and the appointment with the hygienist, I wasn’t expecting to have an injection for the first and was shitting a brick when I saw the size of the needle and ended up biting both my tongue and cheek (lol) after the appointment when half of my face was completely numb – it was a very bizarre feeling which I now realise most people have experienced – I’d only ever had fillings on my baby teeth so hadn’t had the experience but I’m quite glad I went in blind or I would have been a bit anxious beforehand. Luckily the second one won’t need an injection as I still have two baby teeth (who knew it was common?!) and the teeth don’t go as deep as the ones further back.
As for the hygienist – she was a lovely woman and was as excited as me to get all the tartare out. It was a bit uncomfortable as I wasn’t sure if my tongue was in the way at times (never thought I’d write that in a blog post!) and my gums were quite sore from all of the build up being taken away, but by the end my teeth looked whiter and I was over the bloody moon about it.
See? New woman with a killer smile over here.
Now what have we learned today? GO TO THE BLOODY DENTIST! You’ll save yourself a small fortune and the agony of going through work you wouldn’t have had to have done if you’d just gone in the first place. I could have saved that money for spending on holiday – or the bills for that matter, your girl is on the job hunt still!
Have you got any dentist stories you’d like to share? Let me know in the comments below!