No Tooth Fairy This Time

pbtoastAs a kid, I once swallowed my loose baby tooth with my bite of peanut butter sandwich. My mother reassured me the resulting gap in my mouth was all the evidence the Tooth Fairy would need and as usual, mom was right. The Tooth Fairy delivered at the standard rate even without my tooth under my pillow.

No such luck this time, when at age 53, while eating some nachos, I swallowed part of a broken molar. It had been causing occasional biting discomfort for a while from a growing split between the tooth and the 1970s silver filling embedded within. However the increasing vertical damage had remained undetected by an x-ray two months earlier, paving the way for a Wednesday night nacho chip to make the split complete. This time I knew there would be no Tooth Fairy for me, just a dental bill.

A temporary crown smoothes my broken molar’s jagged edge and will be replaced by a permanent crown in a few weeks. I’m not sure then if I’ll be a dental princess or a full-fledged queen. It likely will depend on the crown material my dental plan approves. Either way, it’s likely the only brush with royalty I’ll ever have.

Laura Sternweis

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