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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Not Afraid of the Drill... or I'm a Big Girl Now!.. or One or the Other!

Friday evening the Way-Hot Husband invited me to join him and his colleague for drinks, but I just wasn't in the mood. So, I stayed home, fixed myself some minestrone soup, and did some blog-reading. I was reading Kentucky Girl's when, suddenly there was a "crunch" in my non-"crunchy" soup. I extracted the offending crunch bit and upon examination realized that it was a bit of one of my teeth! OMG!!!

Now, I'm not a wienie-whiner when it comes to grossness (that's the "Dead Man on the Highway story)... and then there was that time that Jimmy's achilles tendon was sliced to the bone in the bathroom, and then there was that time Patrick got his big toe caught between the cog and chain of an old exercise bicycle at my in-laws, or the time Jimmy went down a flight of stairs and was catapulted out of his "walker". It's just not feasible to have a queasy stomach when you have kids.

Parenthetical aside here: They lived through our ineptness as parents! YAY!

That being said, my sister and I have had similar nightmares over the years about our teeth breaking off/falling out. I had cavities as a kid, and the dentist never got my tooth numb (idiot dentist!). My sister never had cavities until she was pregnant with her oldest son. Yet, we still had the same nightmares. We're both creeped out by teeth breaking off. The other thing that creeps me out is nail injuries. GAH! Please, never show me a nasty nail-bed injury or in-grown toenail. Please!

The thing about the tooth-breakage Friday was that it didn't hurt and that there were no jagged edges. I waited until Monday to call the dentist, but couldn't get in until today. No big whoop.

For those Americans who are new to this blog, please allow me to explain. When you go to the doctor or dentist in Singapore, you are going to see the doctor or dentist -- not, LPN's, RN's, PA's, or hygienists. You see the doctor! The actual doctor takes your vitals, draws blood, gives injections, cleans your teeth! I still find this amazing, and it is so much better than in the U.S.! The doctors and staff remember their patients names, or if not that, they at least recognize your face.

Today, when I sat down in the dentist's chair, he said, "Didn't I just see you?" I replied, "No, I think it's been a while, but I'm here because my tooth broke."

He gets busy looking around in my mouth, but it was a molar on the "dark side". He spots it, and says, "Oh, that's from a crown. No worries, I'll just smooth off the rough edges. You'll still be able to use your night guard when you sleep. There's no need to replace this unless something happens to the tooth in front of it."

I asked him, "Isn't it time I get my teeth cleaned? It seems like it's been a long time."

He checks my chart and says, "Oh, yes, you haven't had them cleaned since December 2006." He promptly begins cleaning my teeth. No cavities, by the way. (Our mail has been screwed up for the last 2 months, so I didn't get the reminder notice -- nor did we get our Christmas present from my parents. It is stuck in Chicago).

Dr. Tan then tells me the same as he did last year, "I'll need to see you in 6 to 9 months. No need to return before that unless you're having difficulties."

The total bill for today was:

  1. S$25.00 Consultation
  2. S$90.00 Scale and Prophylaxis
That is it! Do you realize how many $$ this man saved us because he said the crown didn't need to be replaced? Oh, and the most important thing is that my gums weren't bleeding (I floss regularly) from that power-washer thingy that he used on my teeth. He didn't hurt me or gouge my mouth as some hygienists have "back home". Honestly, I'd much rather have any sort of medical/dental procedures done here than back in the U.S.

Our dentist is:

Dr. Benjamin T.K. Tan (B.D.S Singapore, M.Sc. (Periodontics), London, M. Clin. Dent. (Periodontics) London)
Tanglin Shopping Centre
19 Tanglin Road
Singapore 247909


Savy said...

GAH! Teeth breaking! badbadbad! I have those nightmares where my teeth crumble in my mouth and it's like I'm spitting out sand, or some other version. Ugh! (And I've never had cavaties or anything else either.) If I had the soup/teeth thing happen to me, I probably would have had a panic attack. ;) I'm glad the dentist worked out so well though!

Miss Ann Thrope said...

I lost a crown once. It cost me nearly $500 to have it replaced. Pah.

Anonymous said...

There is no better feeling (health wise) than finding the perfect dentist and yay you!

Roy said...

I have dental insurance, but it never covers what the dentist's total charges are. For example, he charges $220 for a filling, but the insurance company has established the base rate for tooth extraction in France in the thirteenth century as one chicken, so they send him a chicken.

mister anchovy said...

I'm very fortunate to have a great dentist here in Canada...he's been looking after my teeth for over 20 years.

Curiosity Killer said...

I've done the same biting into a fork once and chipped my front tooth. I cost me around Cdn$150 and that was few years back.

It's interesting that in Singapore dentistry is the same as doctors. Hmm.

FrancesDanger said...

I'm glad that you didn't have to replace anything. I've broken a tooth before and not been so lucky.

That being said I'm moving to Singapore for the medicine.

Anonymous said...

Honestly, there is the "broken" system in the US healthcare. I'm originally from Singapore, I don't remember that I need to pay $200 for a visit if you don't have any insurance, and I don't remember that the hospital every rejected any patients even if you don't have insurance, and Singapore is not a welfare state. Something is wrong with the healthcare system in the US.

Geeky Tai-Tai said...

Anonymous You are absolutely correct. Something has to change soon here in the U.S. soon!