Dental Pride

Angelous Ginanena

I had myself a dentist appointment last Thursday, a typical occurrence every six months. I will sourly admit that in the past, my brushing habits were quite subpar; I was often directed by my dentist to brush my back teeth better and floss with regularity, commands that seldom stayed within the confines of my ear, preferring rather to go in one ear and swivel its way out the other. Alas, as part of an initiative highlighted in past blogs and in my New Year’s Resolutions, I was looking towards changing the state of my mouth for the better, not just to benefit myself but those who spent time around my vicinity throughout the day.

I was told I would be visiting the doctor about a week beforehand and if I was the younger, naïve me, I would have taken the time to brush my teeth 3-4 times a day, attempting to do so thoroughly, but more so vigorously.  I would floss like my life depended on it, and mouthwash would be my H2O for that week. All of this last-minute preparation would be done whilst believing I could fool the experts into thinking I had adhered to their hygiene tips the months before. And if I were still that naïve boy, like every other appointment leading up to this one, I would have been brutally exposed by my dentist. I don’t know what is worse: the embarrassment of my dentist finding all the filth and crumbs pillaged from my meals and stored in my teeth, or the wrath I knew I was to face when my mother was told of just how bad a job I did with my teeth.

This time around, however, I went into that week with a confidence like no other. I knew I had done good by my teeth over the past six months, and I was not going to overload them with paste just because I feared my dentist’s words. I even almost did not brush my teeth after the dinner I had before I went in, so sure that I was about to reap six-month’s worth of dental doctorate approval. I went in that night, greeted my dentist and met with my cleaner. I asked her about her toddler, born years before, and we reminisced about the days in which her pregnant belly loomed overhead as she cleaned my molars. She did what needed doing, scraping and fluoride and whatnot, and when my dentist came in to view my teeth, there was nothing bad to be said. As I left, my cleaner told me she was impressed with the condition of my teeth and that I needed to “keep up the good work.” Those words were my safeguard that evening, my ticket onto the train of Argumentlessville.

The way my mouth is feeling right now, if I were to have a tooth fall out and I was to leave it under my pillow for the tooth fairy to scoop away, she’d probably display it in the Tooth Smithsonian or something.