A Personal Story: Safe If I’m Pregnant? – Elizabeth, White River Junction


The last time Elizabeth went to the dentist was probably two or three years ago. She doesn’t go now because she can’t make appointments that often and doesn’t have the money. Her last appointment was for an extraction, which she said didn’t hurt too much because they give you medication for it. “I don’t mind the dentist too much.”

Though she is currently living in White River Junction, Vermont, Elizabeth has moved around a lot and hasn’t yet found a dentist in the Upper Valley. She has a sharp pain in her mouth now, particularly when she eats sweet food. Elizabeth thinks she needs a couple more teeth pulled but doesn’t think she can have the procedure done while she is pregnant. “They stick a needle in your jaw with a certain kind of medication that numbs it, so I don’t know if it’s safe. And also they’ll probably end up doing surgery because of my wisdom teeth, I don’t have enough room in my mouth, so they’ll probably have to cut open my gums and take them out. I don’t know if that’s safe either.” Fortunately, Elizabeth is due in about a month, and thinks she will probably find a dentist for herself after her baby is born.

Illustration by Dennis Pacheco.

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