Corntract killer

>>Corntract killer

[dropcap]W[/dropcap]hat ranks right up there with jujubes, ice and rocks as a deadly toothkiller?

Cornnuts. Did you know this?

(Me neither, she said, tongue probing the bloody gauze where there used to be a tooth.)

So I’m eating some delicious home-made cornnuts on Saturday when I feel this odd clunk in my mouth, and a bit of an ache. Sunday morning it started to throb, and by Sunday night I considered calling the dentist.

I have a wonderful dentist–she’s smart, funny, and loves to wisecrack. The whole time I’m in her chair I’m chortling and she plows through my teeth the way the moles plow through my backyard.

Only a lot more expensively.

The last time my dentist and I had a date, I had an abscessed tooth. Turns out that infection neutralizes anesthetic; 4 hours into my root canal, I contained more novocaine than a dental supply house and I could still feel EVERYTHING.


Lemme emphasize that: Everything. 

We finally gave up, the dentist and I, with the root canal half done. They had to help me out of the chair. Two hellish, antibiotic-filled weeks later, the novocaine worked, and we finished the job in 45 minutes. Pure bliss.

I vowed to see my dentist again in maybe a year (or two), but then I ate those cornnuts. I swallowed some soup at lunch on Monday and OWWWW! Two hours later I was in her chair, losing my tooth.

“Cornnuts,” she said, shaking her head, “I’ve had more extractions from cornnuts than just about anything else. Your tooth has split right down to the root, and it’s gotta come out.”

I’ll spare you the gory details, but there’s this thing called an implant in my future, so that there won’t be a gap where my smile used to be. For the next nine months, while we go through the process, I’ll be smiling lopsidedly.

I went home and tossed the cornnuts–the penalty for killing my tooth is death. And I said hello to my new dinner companions:




  1. […] was our teeth. The last time my teeth had a standoff with hard snack food I wound up in pain, minus a tooth and a not-inconsiderable sum. I needed the rest of my teeth intact, thank […]

  2. cynthia February 19, 2014 at 6:18 pm - Reply

    The corn nuts are history (pity, they were really delicious, but given the cost of a tooth implant, possibly the most expensive snack food in the world).

    I have a huge affection for crunchy foods (“do tell,” says my dentist, rolling her eyes), so being condemned to tapioca pudding, cottage cheese, oatmeal and such for the nonce is annoying. I’m finding myself looking longingly at carrot sticks and celery and water chestnuts and….evil popcorn.

  3. Cynthia February 19, 2014 at 4:21 am - Reply

    YOu not only have my sympathy, but my empathy. I spent Friday in the Endodontists chair with a root canal due to irreversibble pulpitis. That pain you experienced…I can relate. Then (later that day) off to the periodontist to learn that the bone in my mandible is MIA due to ongoing infection in an old root canal. Tooth is going to be extracted. Cadaver bone grafts placed, and if I get enough bone back…implant at a later date. I also have to have some gum lines cut back (they call it oosseosurgery?). Can you say Ka-ching! Nitrous is my friend. Have you met Nitrous oxide?

    • cynthia February 19, 2014 at 6:52 am - Reply

      I tried nitrous oxide in my 20s, having my wisdom teeth out. All I remember is the mask going over my face and total, claustrophobic panic the minute I inhaled. Freaked out big time, wound up with regular anesthesia. Never tried it since.

      Ahhhhh…apparently teeth are one of the real tragedies of getting older. I didn’t have so much as a cavity until I was in my mid-30s…seems like I’m making up for lost time!

      • Cynthia February 19, 2014 at 3:23 pm - Reply

        My hope is that today is a better day. Sorry about the claustrophobia. I had such an improved experience with nitrous that I want it for everything. Now I’m afraid it won’t work for my upcoming procedures.

        Stupid teeth. Stupid getting older crap. Grrrrr. Stay away from the corn nuts and anything sticky enough to pull off a crown. Clearly teeth are not indestructible (nor is the bone that keeps them in place.)

  4. Colette February 18, 2014 at 7:16 pm - Reply

    Interesting..9 months. I had split tooth removed, implant and temporary tooth all in same day.

  5. Aviva February 18, 2014 at 5:33 am - Reply


Comments welcome! (thanks)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: