Guest Blogger – Felicity Hawkins
November 17, 2009
Felicity Hawkins travelled to Budapest for treatment at the Smile Savers Hungary clinic. This is her story…
So, here I am back in a gloriously sunny and beautiful Budapest on my third – and final visit – to the Smile Savers clinic.
For now, at least…
My first trip was around nine months ago: after my initial London consultation with Zsolte, I’d flown to Hungary and had several teeth extracted – plus a complimentary, morale-boosting, super-whitening treatment.
Three months later, I’d been back, having sinus elevations and implants by the lovely Atilla, plus finishing top-ups on my two, previous UK-placed implants – all in all, a bruising, but not unduly upsetting experience.
Now, I’m here again to have those implants crowned. Ding Dong – Round Three…
As I wait at the airport for a Smile Savers driver, I get talking to another British Tooth Tourist – a nice chap here with his wife on his second Smile Savers’ visit. His treatment – extensive implant and crown work – is due to be finished off this week for a mere fraction of the price he would have paid in the UK.
And as we drive towards Buda, through the bright lights of Pest, he tells me he decided to visit Smile Savers after reading a magazine feature about Dental Treatment Abroad.
As the journo who actually wrote the aforesaid piece, I feel curiously responsible for his wellbeing. I needn’t worry however….
I see him again on his day of departure – complete with a dazzling new smile. He’s a changed man, and absolutely delighted…
Meanwhile I’m joined at the Buda L’Art Otel – by Es, a pal who’s flown in from Scotland. An osteoporosis sufferer, she’s in need of some major dental work.
But recent alarming newspaper articles have reported that invasive dental procedures are highly dangerous for women taking her particular – commonly prescribed – medication: the mixture of drugs and dentistry can lead to a total disintegration of the jawbone…
Having lost all faith in the British medical and dental system – like so many of us at Smile Savers – Es is here to find out what, if anything, could be done to improve her teeth, without endangering her bones…
We enjoy a decent glass of Hungarian red in our lovely suite looking out across the Danube at the spectacular Parliament building.
Early next morning, after a quick fix of the hotel’s fantastic buffet breakfast, I’m back in the clinic for a morning of intensive treatment – rendered relatively painless by the whopping amounts of effective anaesthetic.
Es is dispatched to hospital for private blood tests – with the clinic’s super smiley driver, Tomaz to hold her hand, if needed.
My brief clinic visits continue throughout the week – mainly for tooth and gum shading checks. Es meanwhile, has a lengthy consultation with the Smile Saver’s facial bone specialist.
He advises her that the drugs she’s being prescribed in the UK are now considered very old fashioned, and can have drastic side effects, according to the latest research from California.
He suggests she should ask her UK specialist to change her medication, then wait for the drugs to completely clear from her system – before thinking about invasive dentistry. .
As preparations continue for my final tooth topping, Es indulges in a cheering cosmetic tooth whitening – highly rejuvenating – but several shades less fluorescent than Simon Cowell’s unnaturally blinding beam.
Between treatments, we have plenty of time for treats – we go to the Opera, the Budapest Wine Festival and happily hippo around in the hot pools of Budapest’s thermal baths.
Dental denial? Undoubtedly! But we feel we deserve some indulgent diversions.
By the end of the week we are sorted. Es has gleaming white gnashers and is primed with a series of questions to ask her UK doctor.
I meanwhile – as a major road accident victim who had her face run over some 20 years ago – finally have a set of beautifully bright, white working teeth.
I can’t begin to say how much difference it’s made to my life – and how grateful I am to Veronika, Atilla, Zsolte, Rita, Tomaz, – and all of my other new Smile Savers Buda buddies
A Happy New Year To You All…