Wat Opot is a little lighter these days…not much but a little. Smiles are a little different, a little more one-sided for some; while others smile a little bigger and brighter. I guess that is what happens when you take 7 dental personnel and turn them loose for 3 days at Wat Opot.
Led by a Dentist from New Zealand, first on the agenda was to ‘set up shop’ and the best location –with it’s natural lighting, windows to let in the breeze and open floor plan- happened to be the craft room. The paint splashed craft table was soon covered and laden with dental equipment.
Next came sterilization table, dental chairs and equipment as they readied for the first patient.
Because of the time frame, those with dental issues or pain were the first to be seen. As most ‘new challenges’ the kids are put up against, they vie to be first in line…In this case, Miss Srey Po was overjoyed to be number one, as SaOun was the next runner up. He happily jumped on the scale while answering the questionnaire, which he proudly held while waiting his turn to sit on the funny chair while these strangers peered into his open mouth.
One by one Wayne managed to get them in line as they waited their turn; some more patiently than others…
And one by one they rotated through the chairs as many painful or decaying baby teeth were pulled and cavities were filled.
One evening the dental team joined us for meditation and had a short dental hygiene program and talked about the importance of keeping your teeth clean and limiting sugar rich foods.
By day 3 the hesitant ones (ahem…the teenagers) were persuaded to enter the newly transformed room with promises that their dental photo’s will not turn up on Facebook!
There were a few tears – but as usual it didn’t last too long as soon empty sockets were being compared.
We will get a report eventually and find out just how many teeth were removed and how our kids compared to other children One2One has seen, as we continue to keep an eye out for new teeth to fill those holes.