Yesterday I was able to experience first hand the Barrow health care system. It seems while innocently chewing on some snack mix I managed to crack a tooth. Cracked teeth are no fun when you routinely breath in -20 degree air ... it sends quite the pain through your head when that happens! It also makes eating slightly difficult.
So, I made an emergency appointment at the dental clinic, which is located in the Samuel Simmonds hospital in town. They were able to get me in right away and I was treated by a terrific dentist, who shares my name (well, at least the first one)! Amanda Gaynor. She took an x-ray to determine if the crack extended to the root (luckily it did not). She felt the best course of action was just to fill it back in, but warned I might need a root canal once I get back home. Joy!
She blew some high pressure air in the crack and asked me how bad it hurt. A little ouchy, but not too bad ... so she gave me the option of doing it without novocaine. I said, "sure, why not, I'd rather not have a numb chipmunk face for the rest of the day". She had it ready in case things got too painful ... but I made it through and about 20 minutes later had my tooth back in normal condition.
The longest part of the hospital visit was waiting 40 minutes at the pharmacy to get my prescription (some antibiotics). (Mental note: don't go to the pharmacy on Friday when everyone else is getting their meds before the pharmacy closes for the weekend!). Oh, and Ian deserves a medal for waiting in the truck for an hour and a half while I had all this work done. Thanks Ian!
So all in all, it wasn't a bad experience ... I'm just glad I'm working somewhere that a cracked tooth can be fixed on site!