Its my 35th birthday next Friday, and I have been scheming. The plans I have cooked up to celebrate this day can be considered both outlandish, as well as challenging. Outlandish because I am (obviously) no longer a young, flexible, immortal 22 year old, and can barely drink beyond eleven o clock anymore, let alone stand in a club without feeling like a granny. And challenging because these plans I have deliberately designed to be a kind of turning point, the end of an era, and the closing of a chapter in my life that should have been slammed shut a long time ago.
Anyway, more on that next week. Today’s scribble has got nothing to do with my birthday, but more to do with the fact that I am getting older, and more seasoned and, one would hope, more wiser. I have been around for a wee while now, and feel I am well within my rights to pass on some, umm, pearls of wisdom to the unsuspecting, the naïve and the innocently unaware out there.
BRUSH AND FLOSS THOSE TEETH YA’LL!
I say that with vehemence too, not humour. Brush and floss those teeth! Everyday! I’ve always believed a smile to be the most attractive physical feature on any human. When you reach my age, and you have spent years treating your teeth as an afterthought rather than a priority, you will wake up one day, and suddenly find that that pearly smile of yours now resembles a set akin to Gollum’s from Lord of the rings. Scary.
This subject comes to the forefront of my mind because, lately, I have been pondering about doing something drastic to reverse the damage I have inflicted upon my poor chompers. And I am slowly coming to the realization that it’s going to cost an arm and leg to fix it. My teeth are in a horrendous state. Not only are they almost as yellow as the sun but, just the other month, a large portion of my right canine tooth fell away, leaving a blackened pointy piece just hanging there in the gap. Every time I eat too enthusiastically, it cuts my upper lip. And smiling brightly or laughing heartily is just too hard now that I have to rush to cover my mouth with my hand every time I hear something really funny.
It’s a sucky situation to be in. Bit of a battering on your confidence. I have always been a smiley person. These days, I have to smile with my lips clamped shut. Not cool at all.
Brush and floss those teeth. And everyday! No matter how young you are, and even if you think you know everything, please heed this advice. If there is one thing I wish I had done in my younger day, that would have been it right there.
The first problem you run into after neglecting your teeth for years on end is toothaches. This pain is, in my opinion, similar to that of child birth. Our teeth are living entities, complete with nerves and a blood supply to keep them healthy. Underneath the enamel of the crowns that we brush is another hard (but more yellow) mineral substance called dentin. Dentin is composed of thousands of microscopic pores which communicate with the nerves inside our teeth. When these “windows” are exposed, they produce sensitivity to heat, cold, sweets or other stimuli. But that’s not the worst of it.
Toothache are caused by a number of things, but the most common cause for toothache is cavities. With cavities, the toothache occurs when a rotting and decaying tooth is left untreated. Often times, in this situation, the progression is slow, but once the bacteria from the tooth enters the nerve area, be ready for hell on earth!
And there is not much you can do, once the pain is there. You can dull it and find temporary relief in the hundreds of methods out there available for toothache, but it never truly goes away until you get the fucker yanked out. Honestly, its like needles running through your jaw. Sometimes the pain was so bad I would want to crawl into a hole and die. Instead I’d try every single method on google, from cloves to bananas, baking soda and kawakawa leaves, before indulging in straight whiskey or weed for temporary relief. I also switched my toothpaste from Colgate to Sensodyne which, amazingly, helped a whole heap until I was able to get the money together to get them pulled out.
Speaking of money, the teeth business is NOT cheap. That’s the second problem. Here in Perth, the costs of getting teeth pulled and capped average around 300 to 400 hundred – and that’s just for ONE little, teeny weeny tooth? It’s a hefty cost but, once toothache hits you, you are deliriously more than happy to fork out a fortune if it means getting rid of the ugly pain once and for all.
I know a few of my family members who have a full set of falsies. From what I gather, the entire procedure, pulling all teeth out, booking appointments, fittings etc costs close to two and a half grand. There are other options, such as teeth whitening surgery, which costs, oh, about a couple hundred cheaper. Barely chump change, and hardly a bargain. You see what I’m saying? This can ALL be avoided if you just take care of your teeth in the first place. Brush and floss those teeth. Everyday. Listen to your dentist or you’ll be throwing all your hard-earned money at him when you are older.
Read through this forum here and take note of how many people are crying over toothache, even grown ass men. When your done, read this one, then think to yourself, oh fuck this could be me one day – low self-confidence because of my ugly-gappy-blackened tooth smile. Sorry if this offends, but I’m trying to get a point across. I personally know ALOT of people who have bad teeth, and they seem to be getting on with their lives just fine. But it doesn’t have to be that way. I’m positive they’d all tell you the same thing, anyway, if you ever pluck up the nerve to ask them.
Brush and floss those teeth. Everyday.
Have I stated that enough times for it to sink in yet?