Dental Saga: The Light at the End…

My surgeon estimates my recovery from surgery should be completed in July. Then phase two begins. Phase two is when the hardware (in my jaw) is prepared to support dentures. Frankly, I am not sure what that entails, and I don’t want to know at this point.

I do know that the teeny dose of opiate in my new Rx did go through and was available at the pharmacy. Unfortunately, a different Jodi got them. Not me. My dear hubby spent all day yesterday trying to pick them up, and they weren’t there. By the time the snafu was figured out, I am sure hubby needed to medicate as much as I did.

When I saw the dentist last week, he had a cold. Now, I have a cold. Fever, chills, cough, and stuffed nose are minor symptoms, but when you add in a trying-to-heal jaw – it is misery. I am not blaming the dentist or the pharmacy for this mess. The “mess” is something that has followed me most of my adult life. If you have been reading this blog for a while, you know about the messy travel I experience. Some of it is humorous (even to me, years later.)

No venting, ranting, or even complaining today. It is a cloudy and rainy day, the kind to curl up by the fire and read or craft or watch old movies. I may do all of the above. Or none. I have a ton of household chores to do. I have asked hubby to vacuum, and he just said Uh-huh. Our vacuum is too big and heavy for me to use this week. I am also not allowed to bend over a lot – I don’t know why, but it did get me out of the post-snow poopy scooping this year. A pleasant surprise perk of this whole deal.

I would like to share some images that have made me smile, even in the worst of times.

Thank you for reading my blog!


Dental Saga: Conspiracy Theory?

This whole “opioid crisis” in this country only seems to affect those in lower economic counties. If you live in Beverly Hills or Martha’s Vineyard, no database tracks your meds. [I make this statement with no hard evidence to back it up, but I am researching this situation and will take it back if I need to. ]

A good friend of mine (who also lives in my poor little county) has been ill for a couple weeks. Not the flu, infection, or COVID. She was abruptly cut off her pain meds (sound familiar?) and is now dealing with withdrawal.
Is she in a treatment center? An outpatient program? Did her doctor prescribe lithium to lessen the chances of serious symptoms like heart attack, stroke, or death? No.

And why aren’t “they” helping her through this? Well, there is no budget item for anything other than tracking, then taking away their medication. She would be better off if she were an alcoholic or a heroin addict. “They” have treatment options like, methadone and lithium. Inpatient programs at nice facilities. Therapy to guide them through.

No one encourages the abruptly cut-off patients. They hear “get over it” or “suck it up.” “They” are literally hanging them out to dry.

I started researching medical journals and published findings regarding opiates and treatment. I was shocked to find out that there is a medication: buprenorphine, that can be used to assist opiate users.

If you do not want to wade through dry legal yada-yada – do not feel obligated. To summarize, they are saying that Emergency Room doctors want to take action starting in the ER. DEA, in agreement with their arguments have pulled restrictions on doctors prescribing buprenorphine to help opiate users.

Sabrina Moreno

The overdose crisis is prompting more hospitals to initiate opioid addiction treatment in emergency rooms — a change welcomed by many behavioral health experts.

Yes, but: It’s resurfacing tension among providers over who’s really responsible for addressing the underlying problem of opioid misuse.

Why it matters: Discharged patients are customarily referred to substance use programs in communities. Addiction experts say administering a drug to treat dependence like buprenorphine in a hospital can dramatically reduce the odds of a patient relapsing and provide a critical intervention.

  • But it’s still more common for the burden to be placed on patients to “go and figure it out themselves,” said Alister Martin, an emergency physician and founder of Get Waivered, a campaign pushing for more emergency departments to provide buprenorphine.
  • Less than 10% of nearly 150,000 drug-related emergency visits resulted in a buprenorphine prescription between August 2019 and April 2021, per a University of Michigan study.
  • In 2021 — nearly 20 years after the FDA approved buprenorphine — only 1 in 9 providers were licensed to prescribe it.

What’s happening: The year-end congressional spending package eliminated a requirement that clinicians undergo special training and register to prescribe buprenorphine — a factor doctors often cited as a barrier to offering treatment.

  • But some ER doctors “just don’t consider it part of their job” and view addiction as a “moral failing” instead of a medical illness, said Eric Weintraub, a psychiatrist who leads the University of Maryland’s Division of Addiction Treatment and Research.
  • Some also don’t want emergency departments — high-volume businesses with high fixed costs — to be de facto substance use clinics treating many uninsured or Medicaid patients.
Sabrina Moreno
Sabrina Moreno, Arielle Dreher

Quoted from the publication:

This letter was received by the State of Utah from the DEA:

Letter from DEA:

Dear Registrants:

On December 29, 2022, with the signing of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 (the Act), Congress eliminated the “DATA-Waiver Program.”

DEA fully supports this significant policy reform. In this moment, when the United States is suffering tens of thousands of opioid-related drug poisoning deaths every year, the DEA’s top priority is doing everything in our power to save lives. Medication for opioid use disorder helps those who are fighting to overcome opioid use disorder by sustaining recovery and preventing overdoses. At DEA, our goal is simple: we want medication for opioid use disorder to be readily and safely available to anyone in the country who needs it. The elimination of the X-Waiver will increase access to buprenorphine for those in need.

All DEA registrants should be aware of the following:

Utah Department of Commerce• Division of Professional Licensing (DOPL)

  • A DATA-Waiver registration is no longer required to treat patients with buprenorphine for opioid use disorder.
  • Going forward, all prescriptions for buprenorphine only require a standard DEA registration number. The previously used DATA-Waiver registration numbers are no longer needed for any prescription.
  • There are no longer any limits or patient caps on the number of patients a prescriber may treat for opioid use disorder with buprenorphine.
  • The Act does not impact existing state laws or regulations that may be applicable.

Separately, the Act also introduced new training requirements for all prescribers. These requirements will not go into effect until June 21, 2023. The DEA and SAMHSA are actively working to provide further guidance and DEA will follow up with additional information on these requirements shortly. Importantly, these new requirements do not impact the changes related to elimination of the DATA-Waiver Program described above.

Amazing. I hope the government actually goes through with this. It won’t cure everything, but it will help.


The Dental Saga: A Rant and Public Service Announcement

I got a thumbs-up from the surgeon yesterday! He said to keep doing what I was doing and see the other doc often. He prescribed 6 more pain pills (this translates into one day’s worth). California (and possibly other states) has this new database that tracks prescriptions written by doctors for patients getting pain meds. The surgeon said they will give him a “warning” if he doesn’t cut me off soon. What?!?

I was venting to my best friend (via email- still can’t really talk), and it occurred to me that I should copy/paste part of it for my Saga because I know my readers enjoy a good rant now and then.

What politician put this ridiculous database law into play? If you want to solve the opiate problem, don’t track patients getting legitimate meds. This will get you nothing. Go after the black-market dealers. They (meaning the government) always do this. Make a stupid law so people think they are trying to solve the problem, but the law does nothing except cause desperate people to hunt street drugs. I am a grandma. How many dealers do you think I know? None. Yet.

The dose I am prescribed does not do the job, not completely. It does keep me out of prison, however. I don’t know why someone would want to take this drug for “recreational” purposes. Tiny amounts certainly do not get you high. Personally, I do not want to be high. Just pain-free. I am a law-abiding, tax-paying citizen of this country. A country that develops and has the technology to provide effective pain blockers. So, why can’t I purchase any? Why am I tracked like a criminal and treated like a junkie?

The truth is, I am angry with the entire pharmaceutical situation. Let me explain…
My hubby has to take a drug with a brand name – very expensive. There is a generic form of this drug, but you cannot get it. His doctor prescribes the generic, but it is always substituted with the band name. Maybe you are a victim of this legal scam. A month’s worth (30 days) cost anywhere from $500 to $800. Your insurance can’t help you out because you are supposed to get the generic one in order for them to pay for it. He can get all the COVID vaccines he wants for free. I know I am not the only one seeing this injustice.

OK. I am done ranting. Now I am calm enough to think clearly and read one of my favorite scriptures from the Bible, which puts things into perspective for me. Yep. If you are not a Bible reader, try to stay with me here. I think you may be as surprised as I was that this is even in that 2,000-year-old book.

“But know this, that in the last days critical times hard to deal with will be here. For men will be lovers of themselves,  lovers of money, boastful,  haughty, blasphemers, disobedient, disloyal, having no natural affection, not open to any agreement, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, without love of goodness, betrayers, headstrong, puffed up with pride, lovers of pleasures rather than lovers of God.” -2 Timothy 3:1-5

Does this sound a lot like how things are going these days? It does to me. If you want to read the words of Jesus on this subject, read Matthew 24: 3-14.

Some of you, my dear readers, may think I am on more drugs than I admit. It’s true that I don’t normally cite scriptures, but today is a very special day – the Memorial of Jesus Christ’s Death. You know, “Do this in remembrance of me?” At any Kindom Hall (all over the globe) will be the special annual celebration. If you did not receive an invitation, please know that all are invited to attend. More information can be found at:

So, until I rant again – I hope you have a wonderful rest of your day and evening.