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Trips to the dental clinic - Chuck Fisher's LiveJournal [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
From Bay Area to Barcelona

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Trips to the dental clinic [ Sunday, 09 Dec 07 | 18:38 ]
[Tags|, , ]
[My Location |El Masnou (Barcelona) España]
[My Mood |chipperchipper]

Earlier this year I thought it was high time that I had my teeth cleaned. Tha last time I had them cleaned was the fall of 2004 and they definitely needed it. I had asked around a bit, but didn’t have a recommendation for someone here in El Masnou.

In October I received a marketing call from my health care insurer, Adeslas. They are part of Grupo Agbar, otherwise known as the Barcelona water company. (Hence, for my userpic, I chose Torre Agbar, their signature headquarter building, which is visible from my terraza.) They were running a promotion and I could add dental coverage for under 5 € a month. So I agreed.

A week later I received material in the mail including a “credit card” that is used for identification. The main clinic is on Balmes on the same block as the University of Barcelona and close to the route that I take to Átame and Punto BCN. So the next time I went into town I stopped by the clinic to make an appointment for a general exam and teeth cleaning. Part of the “free” coverage. They had openings the day I was leaving for San Francisco, but I elected for an appointment the day after my return.

I arrived a few minutes early on my appointment day. After my trip on public transit, it was a short 5-minute walk to the clinic from the nearby Metro station at Universitat. I only had to wait a few minutes before a woman dentist did a quick exam of my teeth. She found a couple of “cavititas”, but nothing that needed immediate attention.

Next I waited for the hygienist to clean my teeth. I was surprised that they used an ultra-sound machine as I was used to the scalpels my dentist office in California used. I asked about this and the hygienist said they use scalpels on rare occasions and the typical method was using ultra-sound.

I was then told to wait for radiografia, otherwise known as X-rays. For years I had the “bite-wings” images taken. This time I was greeted by a machine made by Kodak that took a single panoramic image of the entire oral cavity. My guess is that the machine is too expensive for a small dental office, but makes sense when you are running a clinic.

After giving me the radiografia I was sent downstairs to see a periodontist. He told me that I had some tartar build-up below the gum line and should have it removed. This is not surprising as the last time I had a similar procedure was probably 15 years ago. So I was prescribed two sessions at 56 € a piece. They wanted to schedule me the next morning, which was a Saturday. I demurred, since Ruben would be providing me with company at that time. So instead I returned the following Tuesday morning.

The session lasted about half an hour and I was prescribed an oral antiseptic chlorhexidine to be used twice a day for seven days. My local pharmacy had it on hand. I was also instructed to massage my gums for five minutes each morning for two months.

A week later I had my second appointment. I was told that the right-side of my mouth had more tartar than my left-side. Curious I thought, until I realized that I start cleaning my teeth on the left and may be favoring it for that reason. So now I have switched sides for starting.

In six months I go back for mantenimiento. My teeth haven’t felt this clean in years.


[User Picture]From: gorkabear
Sunday, 09 Dec 07 | 21:41 (UTC)
Gosh... I need to get dental insurance for me. Our Social Security doesn't cover dental care. Oh well, if you need a tooth removed or a basic checkup you can try to wait for 1 year for the appointment
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[User Picture]From: ursine1
Monday, 10 Dec 07 | 05:38 (UTC)

Dental care

I thought the Generalitat was looking at providing dental care, at least for children.

(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: gorkabear
Monday, 10 Dec 07 | 07:25 (UTC)

Re: Dental care

Didn't you see that we have elections in March? :)
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