Sunday, January 20, 2013

Spending a week in abscessed tooth hell

I realize this is a sports blog, but this is my sports blog, and not Yahoo's, so I can pretty much write about whatever I want. Therefore, I'd like to take this time to share with you the unbelievable pain and discomfort I was in last weekend and into the beginning part of the week.

To set up the story, my boss took some time off to have a hernia operation the Thursday before last. Everytime my boss takes significant time off, I seem to run into some sort of physical ailment and can't really call off because someone has to be there supervising and taking care of  things. It's just how the place is set up.

The last time I had the stomach flu was during a time he was away deer hunting. Both in 2010 and 2011, when he took his annual vacation to Florida, I had to work 12 days straight each time, and came down with the mother off all head colds--THE SAME DAMN WEEK EACH YEAR!

Heck, even last year, right after I broke up with my girlfriend and was in the worst emotional state in recent memory, I practically had to work two straight months because both of my bosses were either away on extended vacations or off having surgery--you know how hard it is to hear Lionel Richie sing "Endless Love"  on muzak everyday at work when your endless love just ended?

Anyway, moving to the present. I joked with my boss for days that, once he checked into the hospital to have his little surgery, I would probably come down with the vicious little flu bug that has been going around the region for months.

And about a week or so ago, on a Friday night, I thought my prediction had come home to roost. My "sinuses" were really acting up, and I thought "Oh no, here it comes." But truth be told, I never have sinus problems. You know how some people complain about their sinuses and down Dristan allergy medicine like it's candy? I'm not one of those people.

I never suffer from headaches or sinus pain--I'm weird that way.

I digress.

I got very little sleep that Friday night, and even though I felt a little better the next day,  I was still in a good bit of discomfort. And to make matters worse, I had to work 12 hours that Saturday because I wanted to get caught up and even ahead on my work duties because we were short handed (what else is new?)

By Saturday night, I was in a bad way. I mean, I couldn't stand it, and that's when I realized I had the dreaded abscessed tooth. I've had a few over the years, and I'm quite familiar with the symptoms: Constant pain that won't go away, the inability to get comfortable, and the desire to punch anyone within arm's reach.

If you've ever had a real toothache, you know what I'm talking about.

Once again, I got very little sleep that night, but couldn't call off because I needed to be at work to supervise all the other damn people who didn't have severe tooth pain. How much crap is that?

The bigger problem was that my regular dentist doesn't have weekend hours, and as I found out when I called his number last Sunday morning, he doesn't offer an emergency alternative either. I was royally screwed. I needed antibiotics, asap, but there was nobody to prescribe them for me.

I suppose I could have gone to Med-Express, but I'm a man. I'm not that logical when it comes to my health. Besides, I'm not sure they cover "tooth stuff."

I managed to get through work, and I should have just went home and tried to sleep. Only problem was, I had a bowling match that night, and since I'm an enormous competitor, I decided to make my match. As it turned out, it was my best three-game series in recent memory--I guess I can play in pain.

Sunday into Monday, I was still in severe pain, and when I woke up the next day, the infection decided to rear it's ugly head and make my face puff out something bad. Fortunately, I was able to get a hold of my dentist and he prescribed those antibiotics.

Monday wasn't much better than the other days, but I felt like I was on the road to recovery simply because of the medicine. Only problem was, the swelling on the right side of my face was getting more pronounced by the hour, and by the end of the night, it looked like someone punched me in my right eye--the way I was barking at everyone from friends to family, I wouldn't be surprised if someone actually did.

Tuesday was pretty much the same--my face was swollen, and I felt like I was hit by a freight train. I didn't think it would ever end. However, around 1:30 or so that afternoon, I started to feel better. Ever watch the movie Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom where the kid, Indiana's little sidekick in the movie, breaks him out of his trance by burning him with fire?

That's how night and day I felt in a matter of minutes. My face and gums were still swollen, but I was feeling better, and at that moment, I didn't care how ugly I looked to anyone else. Being out of pain was the only thing that mattered.

I still have a few days worth of antibiotics to finish, and then it's a trip to the dentist and a probable root canal (I wouldn't be surprised if I need three, that's how much pain I was in).

My boss is scheduled to take his annual Florida vacation this May. Can't wait to see what happens to me then.

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