Monday, July 19, 2010

The Italian Grinder Diet

It seems Becky's Big Bytes have gotten her into more trouble again. Last year it was for taking too many, which landed her in the back row at a Weight Watchers meeting. Now her nighttime teeth grinding has caused an impending gum surgery.

Let me explain.

I went for my 6 month cleaning a few weeks ago. My dentist, who likes to call me "Becky Wecky", declared that I now have exposed roots. I thought, "Well, that's pretty rude. I know I'm due for a touch up but come on. The box of Garnier Nutrisse Brown Sugar #63 has been glaring at me for weeks. I know, I know!" Dr. Dentist said, "No, Becky Wecky, your roots in your teeth are exposed." (Side note, I only had 3 Wisdom teeth and blame that for my sometimes "slowness".) He casually mentions that I need a gum graft surgery and not to worry, "Your insurance will pay for it". I'm thinking, "Hmm, not so bad....a few days of ice cream, some alone time out by myself under some nice anesthesia...sounds like a great mommy's day out, right?


I then visited the specialist who asked me what was wrong with my teeth. I said, "Well, doctor, I like the way they look, but I don't like the way they feel." I explained how I grind my teeth at night and I only chew on one side now since the other side is so sensitive. My $400 mouth guard cracked under all the pressure and ever since have been using one from CVS which I was advised now is making matters worse. I asked him if I will ever stop grinding and he said that I am a grinder and will always be a grinder. There is no cure. Apparently, grinding is my "thing". To which I said, "I guess then I am an Italian Grinder." Well, he thought this was hilarious and nearly suctioned himself silly. You know, these doctors tell the same jokes over and over again and those poor hygienists have to pretend they're funny. Well, the tables were turned that day and I told him a funny.

I wish the rest of the visit was as jovial. I learned that I will need 2 more gum surgeries after this one has healed. They take (cut) skin from your upper gum/palate area and graft it in the lower to cover the roots (where are you Brown Sugar #63 when I need you!?).

And the news just gets bleaker. All of this is done under a local anesthesia so the Mommy Time was over before it started.

The insurance hardly covers it, resulting in at least $1400 out of pocket, just for this surgery alone. Thank you health coverage for caring so much about our teeth. Or is it your goal to make sure that none of us can chew so the obesity issue will resolve itself? OK, then.

I will be restricted to a soft diet, will not really be able to brush my teeth, and will be sutured, bloody, and swollen. Happy Anniversary, Mr. Nero!

I am trying to remain optimistic. Things could always be a lot worse. Like my poor sister who had to have her jaw wired shut for 6 weeks, just months before she got married. Back then, there was little variety on the market of energy drinks, protein powders, and smoothies so I used to make her stuffing and polenta which she gracefully sucked through a straw. Watching her brush her teeth and try to spit was pure entertainment for the whole family.

As for me, I am looking for suggestions for the "Italian Grinder Diet". And please do not tell me to puree some provolone, salami, and hot peppers.

1 comment:


So sorry about the impending surgeries. G-d willing they will be uneventful and that will be it. Sounds like you have a very loving family that you have trained well in the kitchen. So, you will be all set while you are healing. G-d bless.