Last Tuesday I got my wisdom teeth out. You all know that by now, cause I haven’t shut up about it. This is everything I wish I didn’t have to learn.
Pre-op: Before you actually get your wisdom teeth out you have an appointment where you sit down, and they tell you all the ways you could die during the surgery. They ask if you have any questions, and you say no please don’t tell me any more about this I do not want to know. Then they ask how you’d like to be medicated during the surgery, and you ask if they can just put you in a coma for the next week, and your dad says that you’ll just take laughing gas. My dentist is named Dr. Mark Smith, and I love him. He is very tall and very trustworthy, and he seems like a great father. Which brings us to our next segment of wisdom teeth removal: trust.
Trust: I trusted Dr. Mark Smith completely. If I had a child right at this moment I would definitely make him the godfather. Every time I actually started to feel the way they were drilling into my brain I made a noise that sounded like a dying dog, and the nurse said “we’ll take care of that for you,” and I believed them.
Laughing Gas: The gas affects everyone differently. A lot of people say they go to sleep, but I remember everything. I remember feeling like my whole head was in a meat grinder, and I remember thinking that there must be a better way to do this cause it’s 2015 for crying out loud, and I remember wondering why he kept flossing my teeth like that until I realized that those were stitches. Afterwards they took me to the car in a wheelchair, which was hilarious, and my mom pretended like she didn’t notice me laughing by myself. I also drooled blood all over myself and the car, which is disgusting, because you won’t be able to feel your mouth for like forever. Don’t be annoyed at that. Treasure it, because once you can feel everything again you want to DIE.
Music: Besides everything else, this is like the most important part of your wisdom teeth experience. Every song has to be carefully curated to push you through your surgery while being teeth-themed because if we ignore the themes God gives us we are no better than animals. Here’s the one I used.
Drugs: THIS IS THE REAL MOST IMPORTANT PART. TAKE YOUR DRUGS. Through a horrible twist of fate I realized three days after my surgery that we switched my drugs, and I hadn’t taken a single narcotic. When I called my dentist cause I’m a paranoid freak she said “So you were fine on just the ibuprofen then?” and I said, “I don’t know if I would call it fine” because I was on the brink of death for a whole week. Take your Vicodin people; take it early, and take it often.
Dry Socket: I was sure I was going to get dry socket because, like I said, I’m a paranoid freak. But when I called Dr. Mark Smith who is the best, a nurse named Michelle told me that 24-36 hours is the danger zone for dry socket, after that you can’t really give it to yourself anymore. She also told me that if I had dry socket you would be able to smell your breath from three states away, and you would feel like your jaw is broken. So look for those warning signs instead of trying to stick a whole lamp in your mouth while facetiming your friend, that’s not an effective way to diagnose anything.
Other Weird Stuff: In my pre-op appointment they asked me what happened to my 12 year molar on the top right. Turns out, that tooth never came in and I NEVER NOTICED AND NO ONE EVER TOLD ME. 11 year old Victoria is clinging to life up on the top right, and I’ve been in total ignorance. So Dr. Mark Smith tried to encourage my tooth to grow up and get down here which is the most long term painful thing in the world. Also other other weird stuff was every time I walked downstairs the second day I almost passed out then threw up. So I got really afraid of the downstairs and I think I still might be holding onto some PTSD.
Swelling: It has been one week since I got my wisdom teeth out, and my face is still swollen. It got like, astronomically huge. What they don’t tell you about your face being swollen, cause they probably assume that you can put two and two together, is that it means you can’t open up your mouth at all. You can’t fit anything in there. After the third day I had to venture out into public because I’m an ENFP, and you can only watch so much Scandal before you start looking up Barack and Michelle and wondering if that’s really what it’s like. But let me tell you, there’s no way to cover up your wisdom teeth cheeks. No article of clothing is fitting, not even youtube has a makeup contouring tutorial. You end up on your own yelling I GOT MY WISDOM TEETH OUT whenever you make eye contact with someone so they know that’s not how your face is normally.
Patience: The week after surgery mostly has you singing “are we out of the woods yet?” to your teeth and fantasizing about hamburgers. My mom took this opportunity to remind me how I’m part of the immediate gratification generation which is true because the entire time I was just searching for a way out of all of it. But hold onto hope cause one week later I may still bleed every time I brush my teeth, but last night I ate a hamburger that I cut up really small with a fork and knife. It’s all about the journey right?