I am sure like me, there have been times when you have wondered what difference might have been made to your life, if your younger self had been gifted with the experience and knowledge you have accumulated over the years.
I invited several friends from the writing community to share their thoughts on this subject which I am sure you will enjoy as much as I did.
Today author Stevie Turner shares her experiences with dentists in her teenage years and the probable devastating effect it had on her health.
I WISH I KNEW THEN WHAT I KNOW NOW! By Stevie Turner
One unfortunate thing about being a naïve, green teenager is that you tend to believe what older people tell you.
When we first moved to South East London we had to find a dentist. Mum took 13 year old Stevie to one dentist in New Cross and promptly informed me that she didn’t like the look of him. He had no nurse, no other staff at all, no patients waiting, and he wanted to anaesthetise me and take out 4 of my teeth. I was ushered out of the surgery quick as a flash and we never went back. About a year later he was front page news on the local rag due to his propensity to assault young girls while they were under sedation.
Mum eventually found us an NHS dentist she was happy with, Mr Brown. He filled her mouth with free crowns and she was as pleased as punch. Her teeth had never looked so good. We stuck with Mr Brown for years, but oh how I wish I knew then what I know now.
When I was about 15 I told my mother that I didn’t need her to accompany me to the dentist anymore, and that I was quite old enough to go on my own. Mum therefore reminded me when my next appointment was due, and feeling grown up and independent, off I would go to see Mr Brown.
However, it seemed that whenever I went to Mr Brown’s surgery he told me that I had to have a filling and an x-ray. This went on for the rest of my teenage years until I left home. I never questioned the dentist at all, and Mum and Dad were of the old school and tended to think that the medical profession were always right. Mum still loved her crowns, and thought the sun shone out of Mr Brown’s introitus.
I regularly cleaned my teeth and Mum provided healthy meals, but as I grew older I looked in the mirror and saw that all my back molars had amalgam fillings. My friends at school were also similarly affected, and so I wasn’t the only one with a mouth full of silver. Some of my schoolmates had their front teeth filled as well.
The fillings were not an issue until I got into my forties. They started to break and the dentist I then had needed to drill further into my teeth to re-fill them. Each filling ended up bigger than the original. The dentist also told me that the original fillings had not been necessary, and Mr Brown had been drilling my teeth (and countless other kids’ teeth too I expect) and taking x-rays that were not needed just to earn more money for himself. I’m not sure if this is still happening today, as nowadays there’s not many NHS dentists left as it’s more profitable for them to work in the private sector.
Twenty years later and the second lot of fillings needed replacing. The old system where the more work dentists did, the more they got paid, had ruined my teeth. The radiation from the unnecessary x-rays may have also contributed to my diagnosis of thyroid cancer in 2005. In my fifties I started to question each medical or dental procedure that medics told me I needed. I didn’t trust any of them, especially ones where I had to pay for the procedure.
In my sixties it’s costing me a fortune to have private root canal treatments and crowns on what is left of my back molars, as now I have to undergo sedation as well due to the after-effects of 30 external beam radiation treatments (which I won’t go into before dinner). A root canal treatment on 2 teeth and a double crown cost me £3000 in 2018, but now I know the work was necessary. I need to have another root canal treatment and crown in May on another recently broken back tooth. Thankfully my front teeth were never filled and so none of them are damaged, but if I could sue Mr Brown I surely would. However… he’s dead.
Above is 17 year old Stevie with a mouth full of amalgam, although you can’t see anything. Luckily Mr Brown left my front teeth intact.
©Stevie Turner 2022
My thanks to Stevie for sharing this cautionary tale about less than ethical dentistry practices… I know she would love to hear from you.
About Stevie Turner
Stevie Turner is a British author of romantic suspense, humour, paranormal stories, and women’s fiction family dramas. She is a cancer survivor, and still lives in the same picturesque Suffolk village that she and husband Sam moved to in 1991 with their two boys. Those two boys have now grown, and she and Sam have 5 lovely grandchildren.
One of her short stories, ‘Lifting the Black Dog’, was published in ‘1000 Words or Less Flash Fiction Collection’ (2016). Her screenplay ‘For the Sake of a Child’ won a silver award in the Spring 2017 Depth of Field International Film Festival, and her novel ‘A House Without Windows’ gained interest in 2017 from De Coder Media, an independent film production company based in New York. ‘Finding David’ reached the quarter-finals of the 2019 ScreenCraft Cinematic Short Story Competition. Stevie’s latest book, ‘His Ladyship,’ reached the finals and Longlist of the 2021 Page Turner Writing Award.
To quote reader Roberta Baden-Powell, ‘I’m looking forward to reading your new book, and find your books the best so far. The style you write in has given me a new perspective and a renewed inspiration in reading once again.’
A selection of books by Stevie Turner
My review for Scam March 9th 2022
This is an intriguing read and apart from a great story concept and interesting characters, it also carries a very important message.
There are many temptations available online, and so easy to be taken in by the glib and bequiling charms of those who wish to part you from anything they can. Money of course but also confidence, dignity and very often the respect of loved ones.
Enticement becomes menace very quickly when they have their claws into you, and once you have let them into your lives and offered up your information, it is not only you who may suffer the consequences.
This is the case for Lauren who looks for a shortcut to moving into her own home with her husband Ben, who is determined to work hard and take the time necessary to build up their savings towards their deposit.
Bad enough to become a victim of a scam, but when the criminals are on the doorstep there may be more repercussions than from some remote hacker thousands of miles away.
This is a game of cat and mouse and it impacts not just the safety of those close to Lauren but her marriage, job and future.
A thriller that will keep you turning the pages and a stark reminder that the old saying ‘If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.’
Recommended read for anyone who shares their life online.
Read the reviews and buy the books : Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Follow Stevie : Goodreads blog: Stevie Turner on WordPress – Twitter: @StevieTurner6
Thanks for dropping in today and it would be great if you could share Stevie’s response to the prompt… thanks Sally.