May 15, 2009


I have been perfect in only two things my entire life. I was perfect at keeping a daily journal on my mission to Northern Virginia and I have been perfect at my dental hygiene - ne'er a cavity my entire life. Though my family growing up and my own family now have had extensive dental work, I have been the shining pillar of dental hygiene in my family. (No laughing Jen!)

Well, all that has changed now. I went in for my regular dental cleaning last week and was told that I had a cavity. Now keep in mind that this Dentist is a former mission companion and we have stayed friends for all these years and we still tease each other about many things. I knew he was joking about the cavity so I played along. He even went so far as to show me the x-ray of the tooth. Clever, I thought, but doesn't that violate HIPAA to show me someone else's chart? Then he pulled out a long needle and before I could say anything he started numbing my gums and tongue and lip and just about everything on that lower fourth of my face. It was at this point that I knew he was serious. 30 minutes later my poor tooth had been been prodded, poked, drilled and filled.

I asked my Dentist friend what had happened. Why a cavity now? My dental hygiene hadn't changed over the years. He said that sometimes it just takes that long for the enamel to wear down. I had always been convinced that I had super saliva that could break down any placque or tartar buildup without much effort. Now I'm not so sure. The one thing I am sure about though is that the cavity has nothing to do with all the sugary sweets I've been making. That's just a preposterous idea - don't even think that! No, its got to be that my super saliva is just breaking down with age.

So, now I have had a cavity and my perfect record of dental hygiene has been shot. Well, at least I still have my missionary journal. I better put that away somewhere safe before someone drills a hole in that too!