Friday, January 21, 2011

Why I Love My Teeth.

There aren't many of us who can say we look forward to a trip to the dentist. The promise of a free toothbrush doesn't quite balance the uncomfortable feeling of someone sticking their fingers under your tongue, scratching your teeth with miniature ice picks, and vacuuming the spit out of your mouth. And then, having to pay for it.

For some, this attitude can be applied to seeing doctors in general - it's not the most pleasant way to spend your time.  Those of us who live with diabetes see more than our fair share of healthcare people, and "one more appointment" can feel like that proverbial straw, threatening our motivation camel. (See also: my inner six-year-old, crying and yelling I don't waaaaant toooooooo!) In other words, we'd rather be doing something else.

And here comes the part where I reveal another layer of my weird: I'm not one of those people.

I love going to the dentist.

It's partly because the receptionist starts greeting me, by name and with a smile, before I've even finished passing through the doorway. It's partly because on days like this, where the flakes won't stop whizzing by the window, they let me escape via the super-secret FIRE DOOR: DO NOT ENTER UNLESS DURING EMERGENCY door, because it will let me out mere steps from the mound of snow my car is under. But, mostly, it's because this is the one doctor I can count on getting a gleamingly perfect review from.

I was blessed with very healthy teeth. Looking at some of the dental history in my family, I'm not sure how I drew this lucky card - but I've sometimes wondered if this is that one golden ticket life gave me.

"Your pancreas and thyroid will slack off, and I'm going to call some other things too - but teeth?  Teeth you can have."

When I sit in that plastic-covered lounge chair, I don't have to talk about fasting numbers, or how often I'm testing, or how I gained 3 lbs. since my last appointment. I don't have to get blood drawn. I don't even have to think about anything, really, except for the neat-o pattern on the ceiling, and how fun the hygienist's purple gloves are.

This is the one place where I consistently get to hear things like, "Beeyoooootiful."  "Everything looks GREAT!" and "You really didn't leave me much to work on!  Keep up the great work."  It's a blissful change of pace from "We need to work on these post-prandial spikes", or the dreaded "You need to do basal testing".

My dental office is my health oasis.  (Which, as my friend put it, is "pretty floss-some".)


  1. I'm envious. Actually, if there's one thing that is worse than my slacking pancreas, it's my teeth. Horrid horrid nightmares of dental torture through the years, to the tune of something from a Saw movie. I realize it's a conspiracy. Likely by the same people who knocked off JFK and poisoned the water so we all became diabetic. But, glad there's some out there who get along with those evil dentists. You represent well. Please keep them in line.

    Oh, and NICE link to the Golden Ticket!!! I did a post on that a while back, and somehow it's one of my top search terms bringing people to my blog. Maybe not what they expected, but it is what it is.

  2. We have beautiful teeth in common (except I had to have headgear and braces to get there) ;o) I don't mind going to the dentist at all! Never a cavity or a root canal or anything at all, except that pesky gap I had between my front teeth pre-braces. Oh yes. I definitely don't mind going to the dentist. :D

  3. I abhor going to the dentist but this made me laugh out loud.
    "Floss-some" - I'll be sharing this with our dentist's receptionist, who sounds remarkably like yours.

  4. I'm going to hang my head in shame...bad, bad, bad teeth here. Well, not THAT bad. But bad enough.

    That being said, I'm so proud of you for getting such good grades in the teeth department!

  5. I'm stunned. This is exactly my story. Except for the receptionist knowing my name. But that is because I just have a new dentist.... Diabetes type 1 for 32 years next month and my teeth are gorgeous. I love it too!