Playing doctor (and dentist)

This getting older stuff sucks. I mean, it truly does. It’s better than the alternative, yes, very much so, but it still sucks in a rather big way.

Since the beginning of January, I have had – count ’em – NINE medical/ dental appointments. There are THREE more scheduled through to the end of April.images

Then there is my ageing mother who broke a tooth off at the gum line in mid-February, so during the same time frame, I have already had to or will have to accompany her to THREE appointments with a dental surgeon to get this properly dealt with. There may be more with the surgeon, plus she’ll need to visit her denturist to get a fake tooth added to her partial bridge once the broken tooth is extracted and the wound all healed up, but I’m not sure yet. She’ll let me know once she’s figured it out, I guess.

To be fair, some of my own appointments have been scheduled things, such as a regular visit to the dentist. I didn’t foresee having a bloody cavity though – I haven’t had a cavity in like a decade! It was small, and it was underneath a filling that probably dated from the seventies, but I still had to make another appointment and get that done.

I have also had a couple of pre-arranged visits to a vein clinic, where I am undergoing sclerotherapy for the spider veins on my legs. The doctor injects the offending veins with a solution that causes the vein to collapse, so the blood that has pooled inside is reabsorbed by the body and the spider veins eventually disappear. It’s not SUPER-painful, but you do have to keep the area wrapped up with a tensor bandage for two days. When you take the tensor off, there are bruises that last five or six weeks – but then those unsightly little red veins are mostly gone, too. I think I have had these ugly spider veins my whole adult life (yay genetics!), and I have been fighting them for something like twenty-five years. Every five years or so, I get fed up because new ones keep popping up, so I get a referral to a vein specialist from my GP, and have a few treatments, six weeks apart.

This week I had a quick visit to the hospital to get a small mole on my back removed. That mole had been bugging me for a while, mostly since it kept getting irritated because of where it was on my back. I know that you’re supposed to keep an eye on moles, to note any changes that could possibly indicate cancer, but that’s really hard when the thing is on your back so you can only look at it with mirrors. So I asked my doctor to just get rid of it. But now I have to go back to my doctor next week to get the stitches taken out. I hadn’t anticipated that – I’d assumed that they would be dissolving stitches, like when you get your wisdom teeth out.

The thing with my eye was unexpected, of course – especially the laser repair to my retina! So far, that has made me have three appointments with various eye professionals. I have one more appointment tomorrow, where the retinal specialist will examine his handiwork one more time. These people are nothing if not thorough, for which I am quite grateful, because, hey, this is my EYE! Still (and I mean this in the nicest possible way), I hope to not have to see them again … till my other eye decides to suddenly detach its vitreous gel from its retina and I can start the process all over again, I suppose.

And then there was the “nice” surprise of a urinary tract infection. Those sure are “fun” – if you consider having pain every time you pee, a little blood in that pee every now and then, AND seriously aching kidneys “fun”. Because my kidneys hurt, my doctor thought that the infection had probably moved up there, and she wagged her finger at me for taking so long to come in. I disgreed: it started Sunday night when I went to bed, and I was in her office on Tuesday afternoon – that’s not THAT long! Anyway, she prescribed some heavy-duty antibiotics for a week, and I felt way better pretty much the next day (yes, I finished the entire week’s worth of pills. I actually DO listen to my doctor, you know!).

So yeah, I’m kinda feeling like my body is letting me down lately. None of this was super-serious or life-threatening, so I know I’m still in pretty good health (and I also know how very lucky I am to be like that!), but it did all happen within a ten-week period. I almost feel like this is a preview of my old age! Stuff is starting to go wrong with my body, more and more often, and that’s going to take some getting used to – if it’s even possible to get used to.

Oh well. I have an upcoming hotel and spa weekend planned with BFJ, stitches and bruises and all. That will go a long way to making me feel better – as long as I don’t get massaged TOO hard in a few places!

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6 responses to “Playing doctor (and dentist)

  1. This getting older stuff sucks. I mean, it truly does. It’s better than the alternative, yes, very much so, but it still sucks in a rather big way.

    Lately, actually, I’ve been wondering. We say it’s better than the alternative, but how do we know?

    • Ooooh, never thought of that! What a profound thought for a Thursday afternoon – I should pour myself a glass of wine, sit in my sunny backyard, and contemplate that.

      Naaah – I’ll just do the glass of wine and sit in the sun. I’m on Spring Break, after all.

  2. God, poor you (and your mum). My health also seems to have suddenly collapsed over the last few months although I am very slowly recovering now (I had a sudden surprise bout of mastitis for which they gave me superstrong antibiotics and ibuprofen, which massively upset my stomach & digestion leading to gastritis which is an absolute bugger to heal – takes months and months). This sort of thing, I think, happens to those of us of a certain age. As my chiropractor says, ‘old age is not for cissies’. Hope it all settles down soon!

    • Sounds like you’ve had it much worse than I have – and you’re still not fully recovered? Hang in there!

      And if all these health issues are as unavoidable as they seem to be at our age, well, we can just thank our lucky stars that we both live in countries with mandatory national health care plans! (Can you even imagine how much in debt you and I would be right now if we lived in the USA???)

  3. Well, I always enjoyed playing doctor, but that is a whole other matter not to be elaborated on here. But, your medical woes are distressing and have also been familiar territory for me since before Christmas during which I have undergone a gazillion tests to ascertain why I am having balance problems. It has been determined it’s nothing serious, but it is still a pain. I trust you will be restored to your fine health soon. Wishing you only good things, my sister