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31 May 2011

Look, Mom! No Cavities!! Sorta ...

Today was my annual trip to the dentist (yes, I know you are supposed to go every 6 months, but I barely remember to go once a year. Even with insurance ...), and, let me just say, I love my dentist. Dr. Barlow is this super-nice and congenial guy who is really laid back and comfortable. I never feel uncomfortable around him as I usually do with dentists. I started going to him last year after finally getting dental insurance and after about 7 years of not going to the dentist. (When you don't have dental insurance, a yearly cleaning is a luxury that a poor under-insured graduate student just can't afford.) I told him upfront that I hadn't had a cleaning in a long time, he was pretty cool about him. He didn't shame me for not getting regular cleanings or flossing on a regular basis (or at all). He encouraged me to be better about it, and I promised to (and admittedly failed). His cleanings and fillings are very gentle, and I never leave with sore gums and mouth.

My cleaning today was uneventful. I do have a small little "pot hole" (as Dr. Barlow calls it) that needs to be repaired. I also got a little bit of a scolding for not being better about flossing. He scolded me in the kindest, most helpful way possible. I have a spot on one of my teeth that will definitely need repairing in the next year if I don't take extremely diligent care of it. That means flossing and using special mouthwash every day.


I know that my teeth are extremely important and that mouth health is an indicator of overall health, but how does one remember to floss every day? Am I the only person out there who has such trouble flossing every day? What is the secret to accomplishing this? Because I really don't want to make my dentist mad when I go in in July to get my "pot hole" fixed.
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