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Another week, another dentist appointment. I have become a bit of a regular customer these last few months. My visits have become so frequent that the receptionists know me by name and I have a favourite spot where I sit in the waiting room. I try not to complain too much but it is not by choice that I return to the dreaded chair every few weeks.

During a rainy day last September I nipped into town for my lunch. Whilst I was crossing the road at the traffic lights I looked to my right and saw a motorbike racing straight towards me.

I don’t remember the collision. The next thing I do remember is sitting on the pavement with people’s coats wrapped around my shoulders and realising that I was missing some teeth.

These things are the scourge of the road

Overall the damage was relatively minor. Three of my teeth were knocked out and there was a deep gash in my forehead. The rest was all cuts, grazes and hefty bruises which died down after a few weeks.

Since the accident my dentist has spent hours restoring my smile. Apparently my teeth snapped off in quite an unusual way which has made the treatment complicated, lengthy and although everything looks ok on the surface, I am told that problems in the future are likely.

It has not been overall a pleasant experience but on the plus side I now actually have less anxiety about dentist appointments. I feel like the worst is over and done with and I came through it so I can endure anything else that may lie ahead.

Yesterday however was a special appointment. Yesterday I went to the University Dental Hospital of Manchester to the Department of Prosthodonics. My dentist sent me here to get a second opinion on his plans for my future treatment. Apparently I am a ‘special case’. He has already posted x-rays of my mouth onto a dentist’s forum for advice but he says he now wants an expert to have a look for themselves. I know it is silly but I am a little bit smug about this.

But I digress. The point I am trying to make is that during my many visits I have had time to consider and develop the Do’s and Don’ts for waiting room chic:

Do wear comfortable clothes. You may be sat for a long time in a hard chair, and then receiving treatment, no matter how gently it is done, is never the most comfortable of situations. Don’t add to your discomfort by wearing tight structured clothing or ones with lumpy buttons or zips that will make lying down hard work.

This man is about to get a case of the grumps in 3…2…1

Do bring something to keep yourself amused. The magazines are old and tatty and the good ones have already been snatched up. The educational video on gum disease playing on loop will make you feel nauseated. Doing nothing will make you fidgety and grumpy. Bring a book or magazine and the wait will seem less.

Don’t scowl at the receptionists or nurses when you have been waiting a while. It is really not their fault. Resentment will give any pretty face an ugly look.

I don’t know why she looks so happy but that lipstick is about to smudge

Don’t wear a lot of make up. It will get rubbed off or smudged and leave you looking like a Joker wannabe.

Elegant Success of the day: Managing to smile at the consultant and keep my temper, even after the appointment was half an hour late and it became clear that he didn’t know who I was or why I was there. So much for being a special case!

Blunder of the day:Forgetting to take my toothbrush to work with me. I hated the thought of the dentist finding food between my teeth so I skipped lunch. I didn’t see the dentist until it was nearly 3 o’clock, which meant that the background noise to my appointment was a loud growling tummy.

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