In which there was some guerrilla dentistry

I’ve been some cool places to do dentistry, and occasionally it wasn’t always in the most ideal conditions. Sometimes I use the term guerrilla dentistry to describe the incidences when you’ve got to work with what you’ve got to get the job done. You might not have enough gauze, electricity, clean water or light, but with a clear and smart head you can still do a lot of good.

I’ve been in orphanages with the US Army in Moldova:

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Where I first learned to love pediatric dentistry. Click on this picture to go to our blog about it (http://moldova10.blogspot.com)

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Occasionally our power would go out and I’d attached my loupes headlight to the overhead light and we’d keep on working with hand instruments.

To all over rural North Carolina with the Mission of Mercy (MoM) clinics:

Typical set up - our temporary dental stations would be deployed in a gym , church or other community center

Typical set up – our temporary dental stations would be deployed in a gym , church or other community center. Patients often slept outside for days for a chance at free dental care.

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I did a rotation in Asheville in the summer between 3rd and 4th year and one of my dental assistants from the rotation, Karen, came down later that fall to help me out in Sylva, NC. In all I helped in clinics in Dare County, Durham, Hillsborough, New Bern, New London, Sparta, Sylva and Wilmington, NC

To most exotically, Kenya:

Taking out infected teeth for a Maasai woman while her brother-in-law and his wife look on

Taking out infected teeth for a Maasai woman while her brother-in-law and his wife look on. Click on the picture for a link to our blog for this trip (http://siteofrandomness.com/kenya/)

Our clinic here is perfectly equipped to handle most anything that walks through its doors and is one of the most well staffed, well supplied and modern places I’ve ever had the dream of working. Today though I got to break out some of my rotation skills in the resident room:

The bright light is my desk lap that the attending is holding so I can see down his dark mouth hole.

The bright light is my desk lap that the attending is holding so I can see down his dark mouth hole.

One of our attendings bit his tongue badly enough this morning to require sutures. Poor guy! I numbed him up and stitched him back up in one of our nice operatories upstairs, but he was so numb afterwards we tried a reversal agent to get it to wear off faster. I was between patients so we ran down to the resident room to do it just as Bri walked in with a “Do I even want to know?”. She shot this picture for me.

I’m itching to go back out into the bush (definition: wherever there is some pediatric dental care needed) and help out again soon.

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