Friday I took my daughter to her first orthodontist appointment. She has braces so I need someone to continue her treatment while we are here. Overall, it was a non-eventful appointment, the dentist seemed to know what he was doing; he was professional and pleasant. All good things.
What struck me was the vast difference between our orthodontist offices in the states and this orthodontist office. This office reminded me of the doctors offices I remember from my childhood in the 1970s. Not that the equipment or furnishings were antiquated. They were not. Just the feel, the look and the general vibe of the place.
Our orthodontist office in the states...a whole other level. First off, it is called Aspen Orthodontics. The entire office is snow board themed. Snow boards and winter sports equipment hang from the ceilings. The waiting room is a plush, interior designed space with a big screen TV and kid's nook complete with a Play Station. Everything is state of the art and antiseptically modern. All this competes with the any one of the fifteen orthodontists in the five mile radius including the guy we didn't choose with the Slush Puppy machine.
Oh, and have I forgotten to add his display case where he displays the gifts for his token system? Tokens are given to his patients for "good" standing. Things like showing up for appointments, wearing your Aspen Orthodontics t-shirt to your appointments and not breaking brackets are rewarded with various incentive gifts. The more tokens you collect the bigger the prize; movie tickets, Ipods and even a Wi make up the selection.
These are the things, the comforts, the luxuries we live with, as Americans, everyday and we never think twice about them. They are small material things and it wouldn't kill you to not have them. But how lucky are we to have such options available to us?