Yet another dental-related tale.

On Thursday, I attended a dental appointment for a clean. Because my teeth and gums can be ultra-sensitive, and I seem to have a low tolerance to pain, I had gone along equipped with a tube of Orajel numbing gel. At my previous appointment, I had made a point of checking with the dentist that this would be okay.

Before the dentist got started on cleaning my teeth, I told him that I was in pain due to having a small fragment of tooth/bone protruding out of my gum, so he said he would have a look. In my hand, I was clutching my Orajel. If I had foreseen that my dentist was going to grab a pair of dental tweezers and pull the fragment out, then I would have requested he wait until I had applied my Orajel. It may have only been a tiny fragment, but having it removed without any form of pain relief proved to be rather painful indeed. Fortunately, I managed to apply my Orajel before my dentist was able to subject me to any more pain.

My next appointment isn't until February. As it's likely to involve a dental impression being taken, my dentist wants to wait until my gums have fully healed from my recent extractions. However, I think I could well end up needing to book an emergency appointment, as I discovered yesterday that I now have another fragment starting to protrude through my gums. As with the other fragment, it's on the tongue side of my gum. In addition to a stinging sensation caused by the fragment cutting through my gum, I feel like I have an ulcer on my tongue as it's impossible to stop it from brushing against the fragment.

This is the first time in my forty-something years that I've had to contend with post-extraction fragments. As a result, I feel it has given me a better understanding of the pain babies experience when they are cutting their first teeth, and why they cry so much as a result.