The journey continued north today, as I ventured to the dentist's for a filling replacement. The filling being replaced was over 20 years old, so Mom got her money's worth on that one.
My last filling was ages
ago. Heck, my last oral surgery dealing with my wisdom teeth and jaw bone reconstruction was ages ago, too. Jaw bone reconstruction? Don't ask.
All of it has been so long ago that, in fact, I needed a refresher on what to expect.
A "dot here, shot there, redot here, shot there, numbness, tooth lock, dental dam, drill, putty, laser, putty, laser, and a sand" explanation later, and we ready to go.
My dentist tucked a numbing agent in the side of my mouth, and a few moments later, with a truly huge
evil looking syringe, says, "Okay, I'll just inject this now. You'll feel a little prick."
I'm thinking, "A little
prick? With that thing?!" and immediately close my eyes and conjure up every relaxation technique I have ever learned. Settling on the start with the toes and relax up, I relaxed into the shot. Okay, this isn't too bad.
When the dentist pulled away, he turned and said, "Okay, that wasn't too bad. You'll start feeling numb right ... about ... now."
And that's when the trouble began.
There are nominally three general classifications of migraines: common, complex and complicated. Most people who get migraines get the "common migraine," the intense, throbbing, one-sided pain that defines the migraine.
Some of the lucky migraine sufferers experience the complex migraine, which means they also have other symptoms accompanying the migraine. You know, joyful symptoms like dizziness, numbness, nausea and the headache.
The complicated migraine, on the other hand, is the headache with visual disturbances, or auras. Something weird happens with the eyes, and interesting effects happen in the sufferer's vision. (That "something weird" happens to be a blood vessel spasm that reduces blood flow to the brain, affecting brain functioning. For complicated migraine sufferers, blood flow to the vision portion of the brain or even the eyes themselves is affected.)
Yours truly is one of the truly blessed. I get complicated, complex migraines. Auras, numbness, nausea, light and sound sensitivity, all unwelcome friends.
And that's where today's appointment comes in.
When my mouth started to go numb, I looked around nearly frantically. Could I see? Was my vision fading, too? Oh, my stomach hurts.
Since the only time my mouth (and an entire side of my body) goes numb is during a migraine, my body (and admittedly my mind) responded to the chemical-induced numbness with my remaining migraine symptoms.
Eventually I was able to continue the relaxation techniques and quell the nausea. My dentist complimented me on handling the whole filling replacement well.
I guess nearly falling asleep in the chair helped.