And it fed into a cycle - as my gums got worse, the more I didn't want to see the dentist for fear of being scolded - I've been scolded by a hygienist and that set off several years of not going. I'd intend to up the hygiene and get them in better shape and then I wouldn't and, well. Bad cycle.
So, with my gums sensitive and bleeding and really, really gross (and hurting - let's not forget hurting), I decided that the scolding would be deserved and last very little time and I should just, you know. Go.
I made an appointment for today. After a long wait (during which I knit a sock and listened to my current course, "The English Novel", on mp3. Great Courses on Tape - wonderful things), Eric (he goes to our shul) looked at my mouth and didn't react in any offputting way. No scolding - in fact, he said that diabetes can wreak havoc with gums no matter what. I know it's all my responsibility, but that helped.
So he took X-rays, and used a device that didn't involve those films they've always used. I have a low palate - those films were painful. This was much better - it fit. And the cleaning? Well, he only tackled my lower teeth this week, and I expected a half hour of picking and grinding and so on. Nope. 10 minutes, tops. It wasn't fun, by any means, and there was relatively little pain.
Dental science has improved in the past five or six years, hasn't it?
I'm going again in two weeks and then we'll see about the other problems I've been experiencing. All in all, not nearly as bad as I'd dreaded.