Wednesday, 22 February 2012

A wisdom tooth

Nothing could have ever prepared me for this situation and I’m sure I wouldn’t react any differently even if I someone had told me how.

I’m sitting on a green leather chair, trying to relax and gain control over my body. Unsuccessfully. Every muscle in my body is tense, like a guitar string. I realise that my wet palms are grabbing my thighs uncontrolably and I loosen the grip.

Suddenly something falls into my throat and I start coughing.
“Spit it out, spit it out!!” the surgeon yells, which only frightens me and I react the way I probably shouldn’t have – I swallow whatever was in my throat.

I don’t see the expression on their faces because my whole body is covered with green fabric, with a hole in it that only reveals my mouth. Everything stops for a moment and then the surgeon pokes my lower gum.
“Do you feel this?”
I want to scream but only a distorted yes comes out of my mouth, which is full of tubes and other medical instruments.
“Right, you need more local anaesthesia.“ he says and pokes me with the needle. The time that passes seems like an eternity but I’m sure it’s only a matter of minutes until anaesthesia kicks in and we continue with the procedure.

The second tooth goes out as smoothly as the first one and soon a nurse uncovers me and the surgeon looks at me for a second until he starts explaining what happened.

“You swallowed a tooth.” he says and I stare at him incredulously.
“Are you serious?” I can’t quite believe what he is saying; I thought I ate a small piece of my tooth, not the whole thing.
“Yes, you swallowed your tooth so you’ll have to have you lungs x-rayed; we want to make sure that the tooth isn’t in your lungs.“
“You’re serious, aren’t you?“
I start laughing loudly and everyone stares at me for a while and then they all start to laugh at me.

My reaction might be inappropriate but I can’t imagine anything appropriate to do when an oral surgeon tells you that you just swallowed your own wisdom tooth.

Photo taken from here.


  1. Does swallowing it give you more wisdom?

    Just wondering.

  2. You were AWAKE!!!!? They knocked me out and took all four at once!
    I hope the "passage" isn't too hard on your system...

  3. What a frightful experience!! I guess being asleep is the better option. I understand what you mean by the laughing thing, at university once I had a chemistry lab and we were required to wear closed shoes. I forgot, and wore some that were a little open. I was close to crying because of the stress, I thought they would kick me out of the lab (they were assessed). I had to wear these BIG gum boots 5 sizes too big for me (or so they felt). But then I started laughing because I saw the comical side of wearing funny over sized boots! I felt like some kind of cartoon character.

    I hope your gums are okay, I know they have a tendency for being really, really sore after surgery.

    Sara xx

  4. My god you were awake?! That sounds like a horror movie. Well written piece.

  5. ouch thats hurt hope your fine now.
    I also experienced it before so i understand what you feel. i want to kill some people haha.

  6. I had a similar thing happen when I had two of my wisdom teeth out many years ago. I didn't swallow any of the teeth but the anaesthetic didn't work for me either. It was terrifying and put me off going to dentists for 5 years.

  7. That was hurt. i dun have any wisdom teeth right now and i dun want to experience it :p

  8. I am one of those people that always need an extra shot when getting dental work done. The dentist is supposed to use a dental dam to make sure you don't swallow teeth or small tools. DUH on the dentist. And why didn't they just wait a day to see if you know, the tooth came out the other end okay before wanting to subject you to a lung xray? Getting a tooth out is a good excuse to eat pudding. It is soft and won't hurt your gum.

  9. How courageous of you to undergo the procedure consciously. I'm sure very few people would be able to do what you just did. The pain you felt is just the beginning of a wonderful tomorrow.

  10. I betcha that tooth is gonna come out a bit differently the second time around. And, you may just want a shot of somethin' to ease the pain of that. Just sayin'!!!!!

  11. I have never had a tooth disorder. *touchwood*
    But I have heard painful stories of people around and I can imagine the pain without anaesthesia. Hope its bot a problem now :)