It’s been three and a half weeks and we’ve stayed pretty busy, but things are starting to become a lot more routine. I’m not saying routine in a mundane, boring kind of way, but in a “I know what i got to do now and how to do it” kind of way. I know what i got to do here to help contribute, and i know what i go to do once i leave here to help make a difference with respect to both the debate on immigration and health care.
We started living with our home stays and its been awesome. Rosalinda and Tony are perhaps some of the coolest host parents in history. They took us dancing this past Thursday and got us to come out onto the dance floor with them as we danced the night away to various types of music. It was fun to see how much energy those two have and it got me and my 2 other fellow Duke Engagers who are living with them to join. They have a bunch of knowledge on all types of life issues and it’s been fun to pick their brains. The food here has also been amazing. From mole to calabasita to tortas, I’ve been happy haha. It’s been a nice transition from the Borderlinks dorms to my home stay and they have provided a space to have great conversation with people from the community.
On the internship side, I’ve been learning a lot more about the practical sides of dentistry and recognizing some of the more common conditions and situations. That’s been fun for sure, but I’ve also been thinking a lot more about the relationship between business and health care. A lot of the situations that arise in our dental clinic include deciding between extracting an infected tooth or doing a root canal. A simple or surgical extraction is A LOT cheaper than a root canal, but a root canal will save the tooth after you crown it off. It’s been surprising to see how many young people go for the extraction because of how much cheaper it is; losing a couple of your molars at such a young age sounds horrible and probably delivers a slight blow to someone’s confidence because of how it affects your smile. There have even been cases where they could do neither the extraction or the root canal but the patient is in obvious pain. What do you do then? Do you respect the business aspect of the field or follow some moral code of mercy? No matter the case, it’s a reality and something I’m preparing to face when i step into the field in the future.
As you can see my mind has been all over the place, but its been fun to think, analyze, and begin to understand a lot of the issues that are going on here both in Tucson and nationally across America. Week 4 is about to begin and this will officially mark the halfway mark. Time flies, but it hasn’t been time wasted. Duke Engage Tucson, we out here!