(a.k.a. Lingual Frenectomy)

My tongue still hurts a little bit, mainly when I try to move it very far. Today was the “cold” day, where I had to eat water ice and ice cream (oh noes!) and drink ice water. The next few days will be warm saltwater bath days.

The procedure itself went remarkably well. I actually was surprised how smoothly and quickly it was over, especially considering what happened LAST time I needed Novocaine: Getting four teeth removed at once, the dentist didn’t use enough Novocaine the first time around… *shudder* This time, a topical anaethetic (cherry-flavored 20% benzocaine spray) was spritzed on first, which took effect in twenty seconds or so. It made the novocaine needle SO much less painful than my last experience. After six minutes or so for the novocaine to set in, the doctor whipped out the CO2 laser, set it to seven watts, tested on a tongue depressor (browned it, like from a soldering iron) and then burned my flesh away (/take my breath awaaay…). A little snip-snip and I’m frenulum-free; then, an inch and a half of stitches were added (which took all of five minutes to come out, ‘cuz I kept playing with my “new” tongue :D). All done — total time, less than half an hour.

Thanks to the Novocaine, I literally couldn’t feel the laser. I could HEAR my mouth sizzling, and I could see the smoke and smell the acrid fumes, but I couldn’t actually feel anything. (Side note: combustion is a form of decay; that’s why rotting leaves and burning flesh smell so similar; it’s the same organic molecules being broken apart, the same aromatics being released…) Apparently, without Novocaine, the laser is “unbearably painful”. I suspected as much, but I asked anyways because after the four-teeth episode, I eschewed Novocaine when I had a cavity drilled. Luckily for me it was a minor cavity.

My tongue became progressively less numb and more painful as the day wore on, as one might imagine. The nurse said it was OK to take 16 Advil in 24 hours; the bottle said no more than six. That was kinda weird… I think I took four today.

Kristen: I’m it! So now I need to write about music, Oregon, Flickr, movies, Gallery, GTA… what else? Oh, I know: Claudia Bohme! Sadly, I’m afraid we’ll have to wait until it’s not 4 AM for those posts 🙂


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