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Couldn’t Blink

Going to the dentist is perhaps the thing I dread most – it’s hard for me to open my mouth wide, or for very long. Today’s visit was torturous as anticipated, but was a pretty funny story as I look back on it being fully functional. I am very sensitive to any medication. At one dentist visit many years ago, I had a bad reaction to the numbing shot that I received. My heart raced and I was literally shaking for a long time. After that, the dentist told me I should not have a shot that contained epinephrine. I relayed that to my current (new) dentist and after much discussion, he began the new crown procedure with a couple of shots – without epinephrine. There were 3 women in the room besides the dentist. One was his assistant who I met before. One was very knowledgeable and experienced. One was an intern and still learning. After the first round of shots took effect, the dentist came back in to check how it was working. I was somewhat numb, but had the sensation that I couldn’t blink with one of my eyes. He put a couple more shots in, which intensified everything. My left eye was definitely not blinking. He took a look as did the girls. They all agreed. He explained that the facial nerve is very close to the jawline, and sometimes it gets numb. One of the girls asked the other if she had ever seen this happen. She responded with a quiet, but audible, “No…”. Then I got worried. I wondered if he hit that nerve, if I was going to have permanent damage to my eye. He jumped in and said it would go away when the anesthesia started to wear off. He asked if I was OK. I said that I wasn’t really – I couldn’t blink my eye. He asked if I wanted to continue with the procedure. I said I did because I was already there and already numb, but my eye was dry. They all tried to find some eye drops to no avail. So, we agreed to just begin. As he was drilling away, I would need to stop every now and then to rest my jaw and manually “blink” my eye using the tip of my finger. I must have been quite a sight. About halfway through the procedure, I started to be able to blink again. I was so relieved and able to calm down somewhat. I was glad when the whole thing was over. I think everyone was. I told the story tonight while my parents, son, and I were playing games and we all had a good laugh. It’s funny now that there was no long term damage done.

I Found God today in a dentist experience that turned out OK.

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