July 09, 2009

Techno Dentist

This week was dental cleanings for the kids. I am continually amazed at how the technology in dentist offices have changed over the years. Growing up, my dental visits consisted of the following:

1. Sit in the waiting room and read the "Highlights" magazine to see if I could find the hidden items in the picture.
2. While sitting in the chair getting my teeth pulled (a frequent occurrence), listen to a cassette tape on the Walkman. I remember listening to Michael Jackson's "Thriller" album for the first time while I was in the dentist chair. With all the teeth that I had ripped out I "Wanted to be Starting Something" with the dental staff or I was going to "Beat It" out of there.
3. Waited for what seemed like forever for the flouride trays to come out of my mouth, that is if I didn't gag them out first. Those things were in there a long time and they were huge!
4. When done, pick out a small toy from inside the treasure chest.

Now, 25+ years later, here is what my kids' experience:

1. While waiting to see the Dentist, play video games in the video game room.
2. While sitting in the chair getting their teeth worked on, continue to play video games or watch one of several new release DVD's on a flat screen tv mounted into the ceiling, all of this taking place with wireless controllers and headsets.
3. When done, get a token to use in a machine full of bouncy balls or necklaces.

I am grateful I grew up in the 70's and 80's but there are some things about this day and age that I really get jealous about and this is one of them. With all the teeth extractions I had as a child, tempering the pain with Pong or Night Driver or Missle Command would have been a welcome experience.