Me & My Manky Teeth

1 Jul

I wasn’t joking the other day – if it wasn’t for modern dentistry and our wonderful (absolutely no irony intended here) NHS, I would look like this:

I have always had manky teeth.  I blame the parents.  They didn’t make me brush my teeth as a child, and now I’m reaping the reward.  It has nothing to do with my intimate relationship with chocolate, of course.

I have had five oral infections in about seven years – all leading to horrendous but necessary treatment: teeth pulling, poking around with sharp sticks, and an intermittent speech impediment.  Yet I brush my teeth at least twice a day.

Woot canal tweatment looms on Tuesday, now that the antibiotics I’ve been taking for five days have calmed the infection in my tooth-that-isn’t-a-tooth-so-much-as-a-massive-filling-with-gums.

Don’t worry – it won’t affect my blogging; in fact, it does me a favour – it’s been a while since I shared a horror story with you.  Something to look forward to.

If I had been born over a century ago, I’d probably be dead.  Not because of ancient dentistry: anyone born over a century ago is probably dead by now.  It’s simple mathematics. 

But I would probably have been dead at twenty from my first infection that led to root canal treatment that gave me a dark front tooth that made me look like Posh Spice because I never smiled in photographs.  Even now that the tooth has been veneered – although it tends to come off when I eat toffee lollies – I still smile with my mouth closed for photos.  Check out my old ones and you’ll see.

Tory Boy might have killed me as well.  It wasn’t dentistry that saved me that time, you’ll be disappointed to hear; but Dr Faktor in Park Town, Johannesburg, who saw me the week before my due date and booked me in for a caesarean eight days later.  He saw me again on my due date; told me TB was still breached (breeched?  I’m never sure: either he broke our contract or he came out wearing trousers); to go home; relax; come back tomorrow for the op.  No op = a baby coming out sideways = let’s not go there.

The Hub took me out to eat and to a movie: Look Who’s Talking.  I never give birth now, without thinking of Bruce Willis.

I bet he has good teeth.

Cover of "Look Who's Talking"

Cover of Look Who’s Talking


35 Responses to “Me & My Manky Teeth”

  1. misswhiplash July 1, 2012 at 16:22 #

    when my daughters were 4 and 2 I took them to the dentist. I did not want them to be a scared as I was..that same dentist told me that by the time I was 30 I would not have any of my own teeth left.
    That made me think , so I plucked up the courage , went and got me sorted and since then I have been regularly to the dentist. Ok , all me top teeth ‘ave gawn bjut I still have some of my own bottom teeth.
    Chocolate would play an important part in having bad teeth…an apple a day would be better but that ain’t going to happen . Is it?
    we shall all be thinking of you this week, be a big brave girl..then you can have a malteser.
    By the way…I deleted all of my tags…thought I would start again! love P


  2. McGuffyAnn July 1, 2012 at 16:27 #

    What is with the standing joke of Brits & bad teeth? Even Monty Python capitalized on this issue (okay, we all know I’m a Python fan…so?). I am glad you are alive, well, and blogging…with or without teeth! ~Hugs~ (PS…I used to be a dental assistant)


  3. terry1954 July 1, 2012 at 16:28 #

    i hate dentist and go only when i am in dying pain


  4. granny1947 July 1, 2012 at 16:36 #

    A visit to the dentist….you brave girl.
    I have VERY few teeth left.
    Still have the front ones, thank heavens.
    You just need to learn to gum your food well.


  5. laurieanichols July 1, 2012 at 16:55 #

    I too do not love the dentist. I sometimes wonder what drives a person to become a dentist. Nowadays the medical news is that flossing everyday will help you combat heart disease. Flossing more than brushing is key to good dental hygiene. I always equate dentists to pain, that is why I don’t particularly love the dentist.


  6. Al July 1, 2012 at 17:30 #

    Finally, a blog that has some teeth to it.


  7. jmgoyder July 1, 2012 at 17:39 #

    I would tell you a wisdom tooth extraction story but now is probably not the best time!
    I have never heard the term ‘manky’ before. All the best Tilly!


  8. adinparadise July 1, 2012 at 17:56 #

    I adore my dentist. 😉 Someone once said that at passport control, Brits don’t need to show their passport, just smile. 😉 Good luck for Tuesday.


  9. sanstorm July 1, 2012 at 18:46 #

    Oh Tilly, I’ll be rooting for you.


  10. robincoyle July 1, 2012 at 20:10 #



  11. kiwidutch July 1, 2012 at 21:12 #

    I also had terrible teeth despite brushing at least two times a day. Dentist said soft enamel, family history of bad teeth and rushing too hard didn’t help. Luckily I have health insurance that covered 98% of the cost of dental implants.
    The procedure entails cramming 30 years of dentist appointments into a year and a half (so seriously not fun) BUT the benefit is that my days of root canals are all but gone and my problem teeth (also largely fillings) are sorted for the rest of my days.
    I just wish more people I know could have access to my health insurance!


  12. Booksphotographsandartwork July 1, 2012 at 21:45 #

    Teeth! What a pain they can be. Sorry to hear you are having trouble. I need a root canal now but waiting for as long as I can because of new insurance which is also a pain. I have a mouth full of fillings from when I was a child. I have an unreal fear of the dentist. I take valuim before and now nitrous. Oh yes that is good stuff. The last root canal he must have used a tad too much because when he said I could leave I couldn’t even get out of the chair. It was great. Now why did they not do that when teeeny tiny itty bitty me had a 7 1/2 pound baby?


    • Tilly Bud - The Laughing Housewife July 2, 2012 at 14:52 #

      You sound like my husband (apart from the giving birth bit); he has a phobia, and it took me years to get him there. Once he was sorted he started regular check ups and hasn’t had a problem since.


  13. Booksphotographsandartwork July 1, 2012 at 21:46 #

    Oh and thanks for the tip that you gave Patrecia about the tags, I had no idea that more than ten wasn’t a good idea.


  14. siggiofmaine July 1, 2012 at 22:55 #

    I am so happy you were born in the age of antibiotics and that somehow TB managed
    to survive and you did too.
    How wonderful this co-incides ?sp. with my dental appt. …kiwidutch can share her insurance with me…$152. USD for cleaning and check up. Fixing the chip from the fall, extra !☺
    Thanks for sharing.
    Siggi in Downeast Maine USA


  15. Perfecting Motherhood July 3, 2012 at 07:43 #

    I’ve had my share of dental problems. Sometimes I think it’d be simpler to pull all teeth out and have beautiful dentures, the perfect smile. That’s until I take the dentures out or they fall out!


  16. bluebee July 3, 2012 at 12:56 #

    Empathies and sympathies, Tilly – I’ve wasted many hours of my life in the dentist chair 😦


  17. benzeknees July 13, 2012 at 23:52 #

    Sorry about your tooth problems – I am in the same boat right now. 6 years – no dentist – dental work required. Although I’ve been pretty lucky so far, no root canals, etc. & i have all my own teeth (except the 8 pulled to make room for the ones I still have & some “wisdom?” teeth). What a great movie to go see when you’re expecting a child any day now! The original was absolutely the best!! I would have loved to have been thinking about that when giving birth! Ha,ha,ha,ha


    • Tilly Bud - The Laughing Housewife July 14, 2012 at 07:51 #

      I have always been good about going to the dentist every six months, for as long as I can remember. The damage was done in childhood, not brushing regularly. My boys were always made to brush their teeth, twice a day.


I welcome your comments but be warned: I'm menopausal and as likely to snarl as smile. Wine or Maltesers are an acceptable bribe; or a compliment about my youthful looks and cheery disposition will do in a pinch.

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