Did you also fear dentists when you were kids? Well, I did… I hated the smell of the room, sound of the machine and the view of the dentist’s hands so close to my face. It seems that this fear is something that kids share all over whole world.
Recently a medical association in Cajamarca organized campania odontológica – a dentist campaign for children. So we took all the kids from school to have their teeth checked up, for some it was probably going to be their first dental check-up in life. At least the plan was to take all the kids, but only less than a half showed up. How did it look like? You probably imagine a queue of kids waiting in front of a dentist room – at least that was what I was expecting, but it was nothing like this. Instead, two large black tents were standing in the middle of the road, blocking the traffic (there were indeed tracks that needed to take another route beacuse of our tents!). In the tents young doctors were waiting to perform the check-ups and show the kids how to brush their teeth.
On the other side of the area, in two black tents more, the hairdressers were waiting, ready to go with their scissors (I still don’t understand what cutting hair has to do with dentists!). And if somebody did not want to have their hair cut, they could get a professional headdress! So later, all the girls were running around, their hair ready for the ballroom! Ironically however, there was no mirror so the proud princesses could even see themselves..
Campania odontológica – a very noble idea in itself, there was only one problem. True, now the kids know which tooth needs treatment, but the knowledge itself will not heal it. And most of the children come from the families that cannot afford a visit to a dentist… So their teeth will just get worse and worse, until the next check-up of the helping doctors..