A loose tooth is nothing out of the ordinary--for a child. For a twenty-year-old woman, however, it is a completely different story.
Once aware of the loose tooth, I wiggled it lightly to access the damage. Almost immediately, it fell out into my hand. But it didn't come out as a whole tooth you would give to the tooth fairy; it came out as a shard. I dropped the first piece and went back in for the second, which also broke into pieces. Not long after, I became aware of a second tooth as loose as the first. I tried to remove it quickly before it fell to pieces in my mouth.
I was too late. The pieces cluttered my mouth. It was all I could do to not cry as I spit the shards out.
I tried to put in an old retainer that I had gotten after I wore braces. The retainer worked well enough to keep my remaining teeth in place, but it soon made my mouth sore since I was not accustomed to wearing it. To lighten the pain, I pulled it out.
That was a mistake. A horrendous misery stabbed my jaws, which could no longer move properly. My mouth was open only a few centimeters, and it hurt to even try to open or close it. Instead of making my teeth straight, the retainer had worsened the alignment and gave me a painful overbite.
Now without the retainer, my mouth again began losing teeth. More and more became loose and fell to pieces, with no replacement teeth underneath to fill the gaping black holes.
Shards of my former teeth cluttered my mouth, breaking apart faster than I could spit them out. My mouth was in constant pain, and I was beginning to panic.
I was choking! I could no longer breathe through my mouth, and panic overruled my rational thoughts. I tried scooping the shards out of my mouth, but newly broken teeth quickly took their place. There was no way to remove all the pieces from my mouth.
I was choked by my own teeth. I am choked with this same dream--over and over again. And it is worse every time.