Dentists, Doctors and Dastardly Diggers


T minus 172

I am writing this whilst waiting to have a filling at the dentist in sunny Milton Keynes. (It really is sunny by the way)

I hate going to the dentist and even more so when I need to have work done. Such is life and it’s all part of the routine of UK living. Soon that will change of course.

In front of me are the usual crop of magazines. Most are, of course out, of date. Magazines on Fashion, Home Improvement and Gardening as well as the ubiquitous OK Mag.


 I never read them unlike the various Word Press articles to which I have subscribed.

For anyone who doesn’t know Word Press is the blogging service which I use to write this blog. As well providing me a vehicle to write my blog I also get the chance to subscribe to other people’s blogs (for free!). These are relevant and up to date and cover a range of topics from all over the world. I have subscribed (see right) to a number of blogs including several from people living and working in Mwanza and the region. These have been really informative and give a taste of life to come.

Two blogs I have come across today are of medical interest and I thought I’d refer to them here.

Going to the doctors and the dentist are a regular and common place occurrence in the UK and much as we like to complain about the NHS we are really very lucky. The first blog I have read is written by an Australian born, Singapore based midwife  who is working for a few months in Magu a  region close to Mwanza in Tanzania (luluinmagu). She has chronicled life in the region; with a particular focus on the Hospitals and the work of the Medical Staff.  One of her  latest blogs paints a stark picture of what medical facilities are available for Tanzanian women in Mwanza. Things we take for granted in the UK are simply not available for Tanzanians.

My own experience of Medical facilities came in the Gambia, back in 2006 when we visited Sukuta Maternity Unit. At this time the local midwife was running a facility as best she could in the circumstances with a limited staff and a very high number of children being born. One ward was closed – simply because there were not enough facilities to keep it open.

Sukuta Maternity Hospital in the Gambia in May 2006

When you think of the dangers of travelling to Africa – you probably think about the larger predators (Lions, Hyenas, Crocodiles etc) and Malaria (caused by mosquitos). Indeed, one of the things the family are currently organising is the various injections we will need. Thankfully for me I had a number of these (including Rabies injections) last year prior to my trip to Vietnam / Cambodia.

However there  are other creepy crawlies that are after you.

The second blog written by a Mongers (What’s Cookin’ in Tanzania)  a family living in Mwanza and working in a development role in the region for EI (the  same organisation for which Anita worked in Malawi in the 90’s). This blog covers their daily lives. The particular blog to which I refer  talks about a ‘Jigger’ which is a burrowing flea that gets into the feet. ‘Jiggers’ apparently live throughout the tropics. The post sounds a bit gross – but seems thankfully a rare occurrence.

I think that the best defense is vigilance – though it does keep pause for thought!

Thankfully we will all have medical insurance which should mean none of these issues should ever be a problem. 

5 responses to “Dentists, Doctors and Dastardly Diggers

  1. Pingback: Hidden Costs | Tanza-Longs

  2. Pingback: Pins and Needles | Tanza-Longs

  3. Very well written, bro. And thought-provoking too. We easily take for granted what we have. Habituation (grown accustom so that it no longer has it’s impact; rather, we start to complain) needs putting in context with the realities for much of the world for whom medical services are a luxury.

    Thank you. Hope all went well at the dentist.


  4. Reblogged this on Tanza-Longs and commented:
    This is not as domestic as it seems – read on……


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