Continuing the dental theme of my last post.

Dentist’s are so good at ‘training’ people who probably have had all sorts of advice and guidance over years, much of it changing with time, some of it conflicting and a lot of it the same.

I moved from manual brushing to an electric/battery brush a number of years ago. It was my momentous change of oral hygiene habit. Apart from that,at this stage of my teething life, hearing all about my surmised dental behavioural history, obtained from the ‘clues’ in my mouth, every time I saw a dentist, became an exercise in being polite and switching off. It felt like it was an exercise in blaming the patient for requiring a dental examination appointment. A dental experience is not something to look forward to, being belittled on top of it, is just beyond the pale. If I were a junior, or in my early teens, there would be some merit to detailed ‘lecturing’ on how to practice daily hygiene, what to avoid doing and why.

Trying to keep up with dental checks when there was no dental practice for hundreds of miles has been an issue for thousands of people. Since a service has appeared that is within more reasonable travelling distance, the problem has become one of obtaining appointments.

There is a temptation to point out that preventative dentistry in my youth was not even on the horizon, neither was fluoride. Preventative dentistry was having all your teeth extracted for reasons that would be considered extreme today. Dental medicine, knowledge and practice, has developed out of all recognition. What there is in my mouth today, there is; none of it is, fortunately, truly awful. I know this, and my latest visit to a different dental practice and dentist, confirmed it. It was also refreshing to talk to a dentist who accepts what there is, confirms that my teeth are quite good and who says that my oral hygiene is fine.



  1. I agree with some points you make menhir :yes: in the old days they were quite happy to pull out teeth seemed to be the general practice so today I am pleased at least they have oral hygeine and advise you on keeping your teeth for as long as possible 😉

  2. The reversal in dental extractions as a norm, is something to be applauded. I am also glad that there is teaching of dental hygiene and advice on and practice in preventative dental care.

    When it comes to mouths of people my age, there is a more diplomatic approach required. I guess that some, not all, young dentists just do not know much about 20th century dentistry and others are trying to wield the service and knowledge is power routine.

  3. I felt a bit of personal dignity was restored at being reassured that my teeth were generally in good shape.

    (I was wondering if there’d be some additional comment equivalent to what a vet assesses with horses teeth. 😉

  4. Either of genteel stock, or, the dentist did not have in-depth knowledge of horses teeth, being a townie. 🙂

    Humour aside, I was thoroughly fed up with the dental denigration with the other chap, young and bull-ish, and a very un-thinking. I noticed he was charming with the clients with no teeth, except falsies. I have friends of all ages with far more dental work and replacements than I’ve even encountered. If his interaction remains the same, I shall have to give the matter some extra thought.

  5. When there are choices it is possible to change. In an area where dentistry was missing for a long time, unless you could travel hundreds of miles, your thoughts become focussed. The choices that came in, were trainee NHS and Trust admin that built up expertise at making it difficult to obtain appointments. In addition there was ruinously expensive dental beauty (not my scene)and some private work.

    Dental services of any type are not easy to obtain in many areas. I am not aware though of many people having to travel the huge distances that we were faced with.

  6. Indeed, dentistry has progressed significantly in the last years, but as you said, due to the things dentists can do today, forensic odontology is an area where there is a lot of work to be done.

  7. I don’t know what it’s like in the US or in the UK, but in Eastern Europe there is a LOT of competition, and I know lots of good dentists are scrambling trying to make some good money. Times changed…

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