Go way beyond the simply staying alive variety albeit those are the most important : without penicillin my husband would have died at age 32 when he had endocarditis, then again his heart would eventually have failed at 34 had they not had heart-lung machines to perform open-heart surgery and replace a malfunctioning valve. Imagine, we never would have met, I wouldn’t have my two sons nor the life that I lived with him and now without him.
It’s also very personal as without modern detection measures I would probably not be here either (a bout of breast cancer in 1998 and another in 2013).
However, it’s not always the life-saving measures that mean as much as the comfort ones.
Glasses or contact lenses to correct deficient sight, without which I would no longer be able to drive (o.k. probably couldn’t have learned in the first place as my first pair of glasses was at age 10 !) ; casts to mend broken limbs or sprained members (one does recall the pictures in history books of gnarled limbs and people at the circus freak shows, many of whose problems were simply due to broken bones that hadn’t been set).
Last year, my blog followers may recall (if so you do better than I most days) that one of my if-it-can-be-awful it will be days, mentioned losing a molar when the old filling finally cracked the tooth and it had to be extracted.
Now I won’t fault my former dentist, it is up to the customer to get a second opinion, but we all have trouble (don’t we ?) letting go of our desire to not to have to make changes. Anyway, this year I needed to go to the dental hygienist and after a friend raved about the treatment that she was having for her gums at this new place I decided to give it a try.
The hygenist could have been my grand-daughter (if I had had my kids young and they had actually gone on to have some themselves, which isn’t the case, still you get the idea : she was young !), but was very thorough. I mentioned the problem to her and as she wanted the dentist to take a look anyway at the molar on the other side, I did see the dentist. WOW, she was willing to try and take the old filling out and put in a new one. The only caveat being that if the tooth itself wasn’t healthy underneath or there was too much to entirely fill, she might need to have a bit of tooth made (of course it would cost measurably more as well…).
I wish that I had had a video taken – getting the filling out was a bit tiresome (I hate having to hold my mouth that wide open for such a long period of time), but at moments almost fun : my tooth « sang ». I am not kidding – part of the polishing of the inside where the filling had been actually produced all the notes on the scale. Of course I needed the extra treatment. Tuesday I got the replacement tooth bit (for want of a better word : not a cap, truly a small bit of the missing tooth for which she had taken a mold the week before) glued in place and filed down to match my bite.
You’d never know the difference. I now don’t need to lose that tooth and in the grand scheme of things the price even was a lot cheaper than not eating well or having to get dentures.
Without these modern technological advances, my life would not be as comfortable so I am grateful for every one of them !