23 November 2010

Root planing and curettage

Today's the day that my unfortunately middle-aged gums get their first exposure to something called root planing and curettage. My dentist likes to pretty it up by calling it a deep cleaning, but I like to call things what they are. Root planing reminds me of a planing a door and the two things aren't too dissimilar.

However, when you plane a door there's lots of room to maneuver and the door doesn't feel a thing. No so with my mouth.

As I understand it; my dentist will shove a flashlight, a modified jack hammer, a bunch of hand tools and a suction device deep under the gum line of my molars and will scrape their roots until they're back to a more youthful, smooth and silky state.

In addition to costing far, far more money than I like to spend on my teeth, it will save me the heartache of tooth loss and dentures. The best part? It's a four-phase procedure and I have three more to look forward to after today. And how's your Tuesday shaping up?


  1. Oh. My. God.

    Please tell me you'll at least receive some very good drugs to take home.

  2. Keeping company with an anesthesiologist has its benefits.

  3. Good luck, Paul. Stay real close to that anesthesiologist!

    Happy Thanksgiving, too!


  4. Good luck!!! Recommend a water pik for the future to help maintain what your dentist accomplishes.

    Best wishes!

  5. well that's given me some motivation to keep the flossing, rinsing and flouride up....

  6. Thinking of you. Glad you have an anesthesiologist by your side. I once saw a woman walk right past the obstetrician who delivered her baby to throw her arms around the man who administered her epidural.

  7. CB: Thanks, I wish there were a nerve block for my head that wouldn't leave me a drooling mute.

    Fl!p: Thanks! I've been a religious user of my Water Pik for as long as I've been a religious user of my Braun plaque remover, around 15 years. My dentist says that receding gums are a genetic crap shoot. I don't know how true that is but it makes me feel better about things.

    Anon: See comment above.

    Kathleen: I don't find that hard to believe at all.

  8. Holy... I pray that I never need this done, I already have borderline dentist-phobia. (generally leave the office with cramped hands from white knuckling the arm rests the whole time.. for a check up!)

  9. I survived the first phase I'm pleased to report. It's really not so bad and the long term benefit outweighs any short term discomfort. Really.

  10. So good to hear your good report.


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