Two visits, actually, with two more to come.
The first was a visit to the hygenist. Victoria is the daughter of Mr Jones, who used to be my dentist, and who has now retired. First she had a good look, and told me that it was all looking very good; I've been brushing properly! I use an electric toothbrush with a rounded head, and then another one with a pointy brush head. Actually, I have two electric toothbrushes, which each run off AA batteries. Having two means I don't need to change the brushes, and running from AA batteries gives me a much longer battery life that the kind that has an internal battery. Plus, when the batteries no longer recharge (after a few hundred recharges) I can just put in new rechargables.
Then I use an interdental brush on each of the gaps, except I can't really reach the ones at the extreme rear. Apparently, this is all good. Then she poked at my gums with a sharp thing, quite unpleasant and when I washed out, the water was a bit pink from a slight bleed, but that soon stopped. Then she scraped the surfaces with her scraper, which wasn't so bad, but lasted longer. Then she had another good look, and found more work for the dentist. The pick and scrape cost £50.
My dentist appointment was immediately after that. She had a good look inside, and decided that there was too much to deal with on one appointment. So she polyfilla'd the front teeth, top left and the one next to it. For a while now, my tongue has been reporting that they're getting hollow, and a week or so ago, I lost a small chip off the front, which is annoying. So she filled up the hollows, and my tongue now reports that all is well. This work was free, because she'd filled it before and it was within the guarantee period.
Now the bad news. On the right side, I need two fillings at the back, one top and one bottom. She's going to do that next week. I really don't like work at the back, because I have a strong gag reflex, and it's hard for me to suppress it. And it's going to need local anasthetic to do it, which means some pain, probably. This will, I think, cost about £56, or maybe £112 if I pay per tooth.
On the left side, I have two more problem teeth. One of them is a previous root canal filling on the left. That's not doing its job properly, but since it's been done once on the NHS, the only NHS alternative is an extraction - no thanks. So I'm being referred to a specialist, and I'll be looking at £1000, because that isn't NHS. If we didn't have shedloads of money, it'd be an extraction. And that's another reason why the NHS is wonderful.
The other problem tooth on the left, is the one that broke several months ago. She says that's not worth saving because there's so little of it left. The alternatives are - extraction, or do nothing (because it's not causing a problem). I'll get the specialist to give me an opinion on that, while he's doing the one that needs the replacement root canal.
I don't actually hate going to the dentist, but it's never a bundle of laughs.