Our good friend Jeanne recommended her dentist to us as he speaks some English and does great work. She gave me his cell phone number, which doctors do down here, and he made the appointment for us! Turns out he was in San Jose at a meeting, had to call me back in a half hour so he could get his appointment book, and actually did that. Bill, who used to work for doctors, commented that doctors in the States wouldn’t even know how to make appointments. Another amazing thing was that he could see both of us two days later to clean our teeth!
We arrived about ten minutes early so had to wait until the doors were opened as we were the first to be seen that day. I was able to make my way through the forms, and then Bill was taken into the room. When he came out about forty-five minutes later he stood proudly and was amazed as to how current the technique was. He had ultrasound cleaning in that other country once which was purported as being the latest and greatest, yet here it was in Costa Rica! All my cleanings have always been the hand scaling method which I never liked due to the sound and harshness. What a breeze the ultrasound cleaning is! Most amazing is that the dentist did the cleaning! There was an assistant, but Dr. Granados cleaned my teeth! I am sorry dental hygienists, but I always felt cheated that the dentist didn’t get up and close with each of my cavity prone teeth. I also loved that he didn’t even mention x-rays! Another pet peeve of mine is that dentists in that other country want to zap my head way too often.
He kindly said I have great teeth, which would be true if I didn’t have a mouth full of mercury. Even his assistant said I have beautiful teeth. Perhaps she was referring to the evenness due to braces back in my early teen years. Having receding gums I asked what he thought. Again, he said I have great gums and can tell I floss every day. Yes, I floss twice a day. Then he said he would give me a tip – how to brush my teeth. I admitted I brush too hard, with which he agreed. He said that that is why my gums are receding…..at least they look healthy! He proceeded to teach me how properly brush. Start on the gums and stroke to the top of the teeth, both inside and outside. The chewing surfaces should be done in a circular motion. When I mentioned a dental hygienist had told me to use an electric toothbrush to prevent any more recession, he said they, too, can hurt the gums. His version doesn’t push the gums back from the teeth, so it seems to make sense. I tried it, and gosh it’s hard to retrain this old girl.
So, each of us had to pay fifty dollars for a modern tooth cleaning….yes! Not bad for no insurance.
I have a tooth with a line along the gum that needs a filling. I told him my previous dentist had tried several times, but it kept popping out. He said it could be due to material, technique, or teeth clenching. I mentioned I wear a guard at night which he claims will then prevent any more losses. I will give it a try. There is another tooth like it on the other side he said has the filling but is bad so will replace that one while I am there.
So, we both go back in a week for fillings. Stay tuned…..
P.S. I also liked him because he was wearing a chili red and black medical uniform…..reminded me of dear Fenway, my beloved Mini Cooper Clubman who has a new owner….sob, sob, sob.