Reminder to go to the Dentist! (Random I know)

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Feature image from MISSQUITECONTRARY

On going to the dentist.

I have just been to the dentist for the first time in ten years.  I know.  That is too long.  I thought if I just made sure I BRUSHED MY TEETH correctly, I would be ok.  My dentist made her disappointment incredibly clear.

If you don’t already know, going to the dentist with ITP can be one of the worst things.  Mouths and gums are very sensitive and quite fragile.  They bleed easily.

When I arrived at my fateful appointment I was quite clear with my dentist that I had ITP.  I had read that it’s important to tell your dentist about your bleeding disorder.  She was very glad I brought it up.

From what I told her, she assumed the worst.  I could tell from the look on her face that I was the first person who had come to her with a bleeding disorder, and it took her a little moment to pull herself together.  She went out of the room and consulted with another dentist in the practice.

This was what I was afraid of.  I had put off going to the dentist because I didn’t want to explain myself to a stranger.  I did not want someone else to have to deal with my bleeding.  I did not want to be a burden.  I did not want to explain the problem and have them look back at me like I was weird, dirty, gross or a nuisance.

While she was out of the room, I sat there alone for a while feeling insecure and quite frankly like a pain in the arse.  I could just imagine what she was telling the other dentist’s….

Then suddenly she came back, smiling confidently like nothing had happened.  ‘Sorry about that, I just had to check one thing with my colleague before we continued.’

Everything was fine.  She was lovely.

She explained to me, as the appointment went on, that dentists are trained for people with bleeding disorders.  There are procedures that dentists are already aware of when it comes to treating patients with low platelet counts.  They are widely known, and you can even access it on the internet for yourself like here DENTAL MANAGEMENT OF PATIENTS WITH BLEEDING DISORDERS.

Yes, there was a bit of blood and the appointment took longer than I expected, but that was it.  My dentist told me that she had seen far worse bleeding in people with a regular blood count.  She shrugged and said, ‘Everyone’s different.’

It was all over.

There is no excuse for not going to the dentist but you must tell your dentist before you start that you have a low platelet count.  Go on, off you go.

by Meg

Meghan Brewster is a writer and blogger. She is an ITP patient and launched ITP&Me in 2011. She is a coffee lover and a try hard dancer. @meghan_brewster

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