Swetha Visits A Doctor
Submitted by: Pooju
This story tells how a little girl learned about health and oral hygiene.
One day, Swetha came home from school and handed over a sheet of paper to Ria, her mother. It was a circular requesting an annual dental check up for every child in her school.
"Mamma, what’s a dental check up?" asked Swetha.
"We have to visit a dentist who will examine your teeth, just to make sure they are healthy" replied Ria.
“Visit a dentist’s clinic?" asked grandma, who was reading a book in the hall. "I once had a toothache and went to a dentist. He was very harsh on me. He pulled out my tooth with all his might and it hurt me very much” she continued, as Swetha watched her. Now, Swetha was worried. What Grandma said scared her so much, that she decided not to go to the dentist.
Ria, who observed the worried look on Swetha’s face, said “Swetha, the dentist won't harm you. You have no reason to be scared. They will just check your teeth.”
“But mother, I do not want to go. What if there is a problem with my teeth?” cried Swetha.
“You brush your teeth twice everyday. You also rinse your mouth every time you eat. So far, you have never had tooth ache. Your teeth are white and shining. So you don’t have to be scared dear,” said Ria.
“But mother, what if they pluck out all my teeth? Grandma said it is very painful” cried Swetha.
“Dentists pull out a tooth only when they feel it will cause harm to the person or when it has become rotten and useless, Swetha. Do not be so afraid. I will be there with you,” said Ria.
Somehow, she was not convinced.
The next day, Ria made an appointment at the dentist’s clinic. All morning Swetha was very sad and worried. When Ria and Ram, Swetha’s father, took her to the clinic in the evening, she refused to get out of the car. Finally, Ram carried her inside.
As Swetha entered, she saw another child walking out of the clinic with a smile on his face. She was surprised to see the child so happy.
When it was Swetha’s turn, Ria took her inside and seated her on a reclining chair which had many attachments. There was also a small sink attached to the chair. Another door to the room opened, and in came a young lady, wearing a mask which covered her nose and mouth.
“Hello, young lady,” she greeted Swetha. “I am Dr. Suma, your dentist. So, what can I do for you?” She bent close to her and asked softly.
“I do not have any toothache. All my teeth are fine,” said Swetha.
“Doctor, her school has recommended an annual dental check up. We want you to check her teeth and give a certificate quoting her dental health,” explained Ria.
“Swetha, please open your mouth for a minute and I will quickly take a look” said Dr. Suma.
But Swetha would not open her mouth. She was very scared that the dentist will pull out her teeth.
“Let me see if you have got all your teeth. Do you know that our teeth are different sizes and shapes? ” said Dr. Suma, as she pressed a button on the chair and the chair started to rise up. Swetha liked the chair.
“We have different teeth to bite, to tear and to chew our food. Have you noticed that the front teeth are different in shape than those at the back?” Dr. Suma continued.
By now, Swetha was beginning to feel comfortable and she allowed the doctor to check her teeth. While writing the certificate, Dr. Suma said, “Done. It is over, dear. You have been such a brave girl. Your teeth are absolutely fine. Take care of them like you have done so far and you will have very few problems.”
Swetha was surprised that Dr. Suma did not treat her like what Grandma had explained.
“Dr. Suma, Are you the only dentist here?” she asked.
“No Swetha, we have a dental surgeon, an orthodontist, an endodontist and a pedodontist, that’s me. Here we have four dentists to treat different dental diseases and conditions. I treat children.”
“Are they as nice to people as you are?” she asked as she jumped out of the chair and got ready to leave.
“Of course they are, Swetha. We are here to help people, when they come in with pain or discomfort. We would not hurt them. Sometimes, during treatment, few things can cause a little pain, that’s all” she explained.
“Wait, Swetha, take this” said Dr. Suma, as she gave Swetha the certificate and a bar of chocolate along with it.
“But doctor, chocolates spoil our teeth!” exclaimed Swetha. She could not believe that a dentist was offering sweets to her.
“Yes, they are not good for the teeth if you eat too many. However, you can eat a little bit and do not forget to rinse your mouth immediately.” replied the doctor.
“Thank you, doctor. I will take care of my teeth. Good bye”, said Swetha as they left the clinic. On the way back home, she was talking about the dentist, her clinic, the chocolate and all the other things she had seen at the clinic that day.
“Mother, Dr. Suma is a nice person. I liked her. Next year, I will go for the check up all by myself, you don’t even have to be there. I will be grown up by then.”
“Now when I go home, I will tell grandma that she can go to Dr. Suma’s clinic if she has toothache……….”
- Cognitive development » Approaches to learning » Initiative & curiosity
- Cognitive development » Literacy » Book appreciation & knowledge
- Language & communication » Language development » Listening & comprehension
- Self help » Hygiene
- Social & emotional development » Social connections » Relationships with adults