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Saturday, November 21, 2015

Money Musings III

This year has seen a noticeable uptick in my pain levels. I think it was two Augusts ago that my neck pain reached proportions that made me willing to try physical therapy. Expensive physical therapy. That did nothing to alleviate the pain. I was told I am too rigid and should learn to relax (my paraphrase of more tactful, technical jargon).

Thanks. I'll get right on that after I pay you out of pocket.

I learned at my last splint check I have worn that mouthpiece for six years - the first four relatively pain free, the last two, not so much. I was warned I might get another one to two years more years of wear until I need to shell out $650 for another one, coincidentally about the same amount I paid for the non-helpful therapy.

Well, that crown I am one week away from getting and paying for? Is on an upper tooth, and my mouthpiece conforms to my upper teeth. Meaning, my mouthpiece doesn't fit anymore, and I haven't worn it in 13 days. My "one to two more years of wear" just vanished. I'm going to call and ask if there's a chance this mouthpiece can be salvaged, but I'm guessing the answer will be "no." I could be wrong.

I am surprised I haven't yet awakened in the night from the pain of biting too hard on my temporary crown. Maybe my back pain is preventing me from sleeping that deeply. However, as the days creep by, my left jaw and neck pain are increasing. Is this because I'm wearing a temporary crown, because I'm not wearing my mouthpiece, or because I'm stressed out with all the money my body is costing me? I don't know. The jaw pain has always been on the left. Maybe it's from carrying my purse.

I do know my mouthpiece seemed to decrease in efficacy the longer I wore it, and the cost to tweak it increases every two years. I know I have more fillings in my upper teeth that may need crowns in the next six years, or even more expensive root canals. and it will only take one to make my equally expensive mouthpiece utterly useless.

So, do I buy a new mouthpiece for $650, and hope for the best, even though I'm not sure it will work anymore? Or do I go without and let my teeth just grind against each other until none of them are left?

Because "relaxing" isn't going to happen. Turtles are rigid, from base of neck to base of tail, and that ain't never going to change. Coincidentally, that's exactly where the pain originates. Lot of coincidences in this story.

Push button. Receive bacon.

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