I Have a Hole in My Head

I suppose you might be nodding your head and saying, “I know that, Alan.” Of course, I’m not kidding. I do have a hole in my head.

Over Christmas I was feeling horrible…lots of tooth pain on one side of my upper molars. At first I thought it was just from receding gums that had suddenly gotten out of control. However, after a couple days of intense sensitivity and pain, the symptoms began changing. Over a few days I went from one intolerable symptom to another one.

Unfortunately, during the holidays, most professionals, like dentists, are taking vacations and even finding one that has any level of competence can be very difficult. Thanks to our former co-workers, Paul and Grace Becker, they gave me a lead on a dentist they tried in an emergency a few years back so I tried him too. He took a look at my teeth and an x-ray and concluded I needed a root canal. The bad tooth has been a problem over the years and was one that had had a deep cavity. All my teeth have had the amalgam removed and restored with a resin. That was a couple years ago. My teeth hurt for about 2 years after that work. Turns out the dentist here thinks that a nerve was nicked in some prior dental work and over Christmas, that nerve was irritated and produced a mouthful of pain and symptoms.

However, this dentist is actually an orthodontist. He doesn’t do surgery. He has a surgeon from Querétaro who comes on Fridays to do surgery in his office on his patients. So, last Friday she took out two of the three roots and today she took out the deeper one which goes into the bone. My only other root canal done was a back in about 2006. It was the worst medical experience I’ve ever had. I was very concerned about how painful this root canal would be. The last one took two dentists to complete it, and the 2nd one had to put her knee on me so I wouldn’t convulse out of the chair (yeah…it hurt to the point of shaking uncontrollably). Praise God, this surgeon must be an expert on putting the two shots right into the correct place. I didn’t feel anything (other than the shots). My mouth is sore but I’m so thankful that this was relatively pain-free.

So, that is how I have a hole in my head. It’s a hollow tooth. Of course, it’s filled with some kind of white putty/cement at the moment.

Next Wednesday, I go back to the orthodontist/dentist here and he’ll do whatever needs to be done next. I think he’ll make a mold of the tooth and have a crown made and then install that. I don’t know what the crown will cost but the root canal was only $1800 pesos (about $150). When the work is good and pain-free like this, it certainly is the way to go compared to having it done in the USA. I suspect that would have cost $800 or more in the USA. I suspect the crown will be a lot more but we’ll see.

We’ll take Dayton with me to the Wednesday appointment. We’ll have his teeth evaluated for the braces he’s going to need this year. We’ll have to use this surgeon for Cameron’s wisdom teeth extraction later this year too. If his experience is like mine, he’ll be glad we found her.

I guess we’ll be putting our money where our mouths are this year. At least we can afford the work down here. God is good.


About alanbeth

What’s up? or rather, ¿Qué pasa? Hola, I’m Alan. I’m a missionary living in Mexico. We have a heart for MK Education and so we teach at a local Christian school with MK students as well as nationals and foreign students as well. I occasionally write or have a pic to share with you at my blog, Knowing Your ABCDs, which you can read with a click on the button above. You can read my blog with a click on the button above.
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