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Sunday, August 26, 2007

Of Molars, Incisors and Dentists


Last week I visited a dentist. I cannot exactly trace the period when I had last visited one but it was certainly a long, long, long... time ago. Why do I have the dentist phobia is also something I cannot recall. Only that my association with dental patients have always resulted in an understanding that these lot of doctors can be very 'painful.' Friends holding their mouth with miserable expressions before and after visiting a dentist had an 'Ally Mcbea'l effect on my imagination. I began to regard dentists as a species who in their 5-6 year period of studies learn and master the art of masochism. Such was the phobia that I refused to get one of my upper molars checked for severe ache and I bore it for days striving on dozens of brufens. When the pain subsided and after a few months a small section of the tooth also broke off, I became an advocate of "no dentist but self help of one's own enamels." This was a few years back. Last week was different.
Simmi and I had an argument over something and I wanted to reach home late. I really do not know what was cooking in my head when I parked my bike close to the dental clinic. Of course there was this pressure that one of my incisors was infected, that I could not chew well from the right side, also that two of my left molars had very visible "CAVITIES" (yeah that's in upper-case) and a reminiscence of my tooth ache was haunting one of the lower molars. (phew and I thought I will never have to visit a dentist)
I very surreptitiously entered the clinic. My mind was racking for excuses to avoid a confrontation. The empty reception was a good excuse and I was about to leave when I heard a lady call -"Yes, Can I help you?"
The next thing I remember is me addressing her about my tooth problems and a while later seated on the dental chair for a routine examination.
"Open your mouth wide," she asked.
For a moment I thought that, "This is it. I should immediately leave."
Miraculously I held on and after the examination she dropped the bomb.
"Binodan, 8 cavities and probably 2 RCTs that will need immediate action," Aarika expressed in boisterous voice.
I seriously wondered what's the need for the excitement unless that every time a dentist examines the enamels he/she digs into it as unto a gold-mine. Of-course that each filling is at Rs 500 and the two probable RCTs are pegged at Rs 3000/- each are the finer details that she would explain later. (So you see where the gold mine analogy fits)
At that moment noting Aarika's chirpy voice I guessed that they would be painless rendering and promptly agreed on a sitting for Saturday.
After the examination I felt proud of myself. It took me courage under "the dentist's lamp" to overcome a phobia.
So what happened on Saturday is something I will chip in another entry. Though I still uphold the courage, I have some very descriptive moments to share when Aarika had lowered the drilling machine into one my molars. ;)

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