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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

arrival in kampala up through 2nd day of clinc

We safely arrived in Kampala late friday night.  Saturday we had a successful day setting up our clinic and working out anything that needed to be done.  Sleeping here for me is tough.  There is a carwash/bar restraunt across the street that plays music very loud til all hours of the morning.  Sunday we slept in a little and I headed into town and attended church at watoto with some of the group.  Some people headed to Speak, which is a hotel with a nice pool to relax for the day.  After church we decided to go to the market and do some shopping, had lunch and headed to the mall for a little more shopping.  We took a taxi back to mild may after shopping, which was an interesting ride.  8 of us plus the driver had piled into a small SUV.  I strattled between the back seat and the 2 front seats which was quite entertaining.  Sunday when I got back to mild may my cousin Becky from Ohio met me here and stayed 2 nights with me.  It was awesome to get to see my cousin here in Uganda.  She has been here doing missionary work since august.  We are closer here in uganda then in the U.S.  Monday was our first day of clinic.  We saw 86 patients and worked from about 9:00 am until after 7 pm.  It was a very incredible experience.  We did a lot of cleaning, extractions, and a few silver and white fillings.  Some of this is very heart breaking for me, but at the same time I know I am doing a great thing.  Yesterday we saw a 4 year old and we had to extract all of his baby teeth on the bottom and 2 on top because of severe decay.  This was very heart breaking for me.  In our clinic at home we would try to save some of these teeth with baby root canals and crowns, but here we are unable to do that kind of treatment.  If it goes into the nerve of the tooth we have to extract it.
Today is tuesday and was our 2nd day of clinic.  My cousin had breakfast and left after that.  It was great just to spend a little time with her.   Today we saw 65 patients.  The major heart breaker for me today was my 1o year old patient fred.  He was living in town with just his mom, who passed away last week.  A nurse went to check on him today and found him in bed sleeping with a burning fever.  We did a few extractions and fillings for him today.  We gave him a few doses of medicine, provided him with a few changes of clothes, and a few extra toys.  He was the sweetest boy.  Can you imagine being 10 years old and fending for yourself because I surely can't!  I saw him after lunch and he looked like he was feeling better which made me feel good. 
It is hard when we can not treat every tooth that has a problem, but knowing that we were able to do something for the patient makes me feel better.  It is heartbreaking numbing up the whole mouth and extracting 5-10 teeth on patients.  At home we would numb 1 or 2 areas of the mouth, never the whole thing. 

Tomorrow will be a long day.  We are expecting about 80 patients that will be bused in from up country.  It sometimes takes them a few hours to get here and we won't know exactly when they will arrive.  So I am sure we will be working past 7 again.

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