Dental Mental Health

I have been neglecting the blog world more than usual lately, and the reason is because I have had some appointments with the dentist.  Is that a good enough excuse?  Because it’s really all I’ve got.

Tomorrow, at the ungodly hour of seven-thirty I make my third and final trip to Smiles Dental House of Horrors (not its real name) to get two chipped teeth repaired (not caused by chewing on branches or twigs) and then I have to suffer through the obligatory cleaning where the pissed off dental hygienist  tries to scrape off every speck of enamel I have left while muttering about my gums bleeding on her instruments.  All hygienists are pissed off, it’s in their job description.  Plaque makes them downright belligerent.  They really should try to be thankful for it, because – come on – without it, they would be unemployed.

All my life I’ve been a dentist avoider.  I prefer to wait until the situation gets serious before wasting their time on something as boring as mere maintenance.  I went for two days once with a toothache because I was afraid of the pain the dentist might cause with his drills. So I guess you would call that suffering pain to avoid suffering pain.   Not the proudest or brightest page in my life story.

My dental phobia is a lot milder than it used to be, thanks to a great dentist who has a lot of patience with wimps.  All it takes is a couple of traumatic experiences as a child to instill a lifelong fear – and then a hundred million non traumatic visits to get over it.  I just have to keep telling myself that it’s an hour or two – that’s all – and then it’s over.  And I can come home and play candy crush for the rest of the day.  There’s still that little kid in me who likes to be rewarded for being brave.

My List of All Things ICK

Irrational fears are nothing new.  Everybody has something that pushes an anxiety button causing mild dismay or distress.  Never mind the major phobias, like fear of heights, being closed in, flying, water, spiders, snakes, or being afraid of the dark.  The people who fear these things don’t really believe deep down they’re being all that irrational.  It’s healthy to have a fear of wild animals, for instance.  And therefore camping and hiking and wilderness areas in general.  Really, it’s freaking dangerous out there, what are you DOING?

But I’m not talking about the big things.  It’s the mini phobias that give you the willies or the heebie-jeebies  but don’t seem to have the same effect on everyone else.  And you can’t quite put your finger on any rational reason for that shiver of dread.  It’s those little things that make you cry ICK as you slowly back away, or (worst case scenario) run from the room screaming like a girl.

So here’s my personal list of all things ICK.  In random order of ickyness.

1.  Moths attracted to my reading light and threatening to land anywhere near my head.  Get away from me, or prepare to die.

2.  Rodents (except for squirrels because they should never have been classified as such.  Who did that?)  (Despite the fact that they’re cute, even squirrels better not touch me with those icky little black feet.)

3. Those gross globby white mucous-y  blobby things on cracked raw eggs  Get them OFF.  Gah.

4.  Gummies.  Especially worms.  And I don’t care if they’re shaped like cute little teddy bears or covered in sugar.  That does not disguise their squishy ick factor in the slightest.

5.  June bugs.  Other beetles.  Crawly things that crunch if you step on them.

6.  Dirty fingernails.  Ewww.  What the hell is under there and is it growing? Like mould?

7.  Too ripe bananas.  Black ones push me over the edge.

8.  Globs of toothpaste and spit left in the sink.  Gag.

9.  Slime.  Or anything that resembles slime.  Or feels like slime.  Or might one day turn into some form of slime.

10.  Anything (ANYTHING) that smells weird or dreadful or peculiar or off.  Especially if it turns up in my fridge.

Okay.  On the neurotic ick scale from one to ten, I’d rate myself a three.  Four tops.  Come on.  There are things on that list that are too cringe-worthy for a revulsion to them to ever be considered abnormal.