No pain no gain

Din Din woke up with a sharp pain in his tooth in the middle of the night. When Mrs. Dee awoke at dawn she saw Din Din sitting by the cave entrance with his paw resting against his jaw.

“My dear Din Din! What’s the matter?” asked Mrs. Dee.

“It’s my tooth, Ma,” Din Din groaned. “Remember I had a toothache a few years ago. Ever since, I have been using the Salvadora Persica tree twig.”

“Yes, we have been regularly brushing with the twig and you have never complained of any tooth problems,” Mrs. Dee said.

“Well, I have been a little neglectful. I’m so tired at night that I just fall asleep without brushing and I have been gorging on too many of your chocolates too,” admitted Din Din shame-faced.

“Oh, dear!” exclaimed Mrs. Dee. Just then Din Din’s Grandmamma walked into the living area of the cave. When she heard their conversation, she said, “Let’s try gargling with some salt water,” she suggested.

So Din Din spent some time gargling with warm salt water but it didn’t decrease his pain.

“I’m afraid we will have to make a trip to Dr. Trish, the triceratops doctor,” said Mrs. Dee with a sigh.

So a tormented Din Din dragged himself behind his mother to the series of caves which served as Dr. Trish’s clinic.

“Hmmm…,” said Dr. Trish as she peered into his mouth. “You have a cavity. And it’s a bad one in your molar right at the back.”

“What can we do about it?” asked Mrs. Dee as Din Din wriggled uncomfortably. “I will soak some clove oil in cotton and fill it in the cavity to ease the pain,” said the doctor, “But I think this tooth might need to be extracted.”

Din Din gasped. He had heard extractions could be very painful and gruesome.

“No!” he yelled. “I will not have my tooth taken out.”

Dr. Trish looked at him sternly. She was a no-nonsense doctor whom even larger dinosaurs feared. “Then learn to live with this pain! You young dinosaurs don’t take care of your teeth; you gorge on sweet things and you expect your teeth to be in perfect condition,” she growled.

Mrs. Dee calmed down the doctor, “Please, pay no heed to him. We will do whatever you advise.” Dr. Trish took a deep breath, “I do not do extractions. You will have to make a trip to Dr. Lobo. He is a lobster and he usually does complicated extractions. His pincers allow him a firm grip on the tooth and he pulls it out.”

The cotton-clove oil filling gave Din Din some relief but he could not eat anything. His mother was adamant by the end of the day, “You can’t starve yourself forever. Let’s go to Dr. Lobo,” she said putting her foot down.

Din Din did not have the strength to argue. The pain was becoming so unbearable that he wished he himself could pull it out.

“Out with it then,” he groaned. So after another sleepless, painful night, Din Din set off with his mother to the beach at the southern coast of D’Land. Din Din recognized it as the place where he had been with his friends, Dazel and Delma for a picnic.

“Dr. Trish said that Dr. Lobo is a bit eccentric. He lives in one of the caverns under the cliffs of this beach,” said Mrs. Dee as they walked down the moss which grew at the banks of the sandy, windy beach.

“There!” pointed Din Din. He had spotted a large wooden sign hanging outside a yawning cavern entrance. It read: Dr. Lobo’s Tooth Solutions — Pain with Gain!

Din Din gulped. His mother led him inside. It took a while to get used to the dim lighting inside the cavern. Long, pointed stalactites hung from the ceiling.

“Who goes there?” came a squeaky voice. A large, scarlet coloured lobster scuttled out of one of the corners.

“Ummm… good day Dr. Lobo. I am Mrs. Dee. My son Din Din has a cavity in his tooth and Dr. Trish has advised that you extract it,” explained Mrs. Dee nervously.

“Ah! With pleasure. But what will you barter for my services?” asked the lobster his eyes wide with anticipation. Din Din just wanted to rush out of the cavern but the stabbing pain in his mouth convinced him to go along with what was happening.

Dr. Trish had warned Mrs. Dee that Dr. Lobo’s treatment would be expensive.

“I have a sack of flour and a bag of the best sunflower seeds,” Mrs. Dee began.

“Not interested…,” Dr. Lobo cut her off.

“How about chocolates,” blurted out Din Din.

“What’s that?” asked Dr. Lobo intrigued.

“It’s the sweetest, most divine thing you could have tasted,” Din Din egged him on.

“But I will deliver it tomorrow. I don’t have any at the moment,” said Mrs. Dee. “Fine!” said Dr. Lobo.

He asked Din Din to sit on a rock fashioned into an upright seat. A ball of fireflies fluttered above the chair illuminating it.

Din Din opened his aching mouth. Dr. Lobo crawled onto Din Din’s head and put his pincer inside. Din Din squirmed. He dabbed some concentrated clove oil around the area of his decayed tooth.

Din Din squeezed his eyes shut anticipating more pain. Before he knew it Dr. Lobo’s pincer fastened itself on the tooth and yanked it out.

“Owwww…,” Din Din’s cry could be heard for miles.

“There you go,” said Dr. Lobo as he crawled down Din Din’s head. “I expect my chocolates first thing tomorrow. Here is some lavender oil. Make him drink it. It will help relieve the pain and also put him to sleep,” said Dr. Lobo and he scuttled back in one of the cavern corners.

Din Din trudged back home, his mouth throbbing. But the thought that this pain was temporary now was a cause for relief. After a night of drugged sleep he was much better. Early the next morning Dazel accompanied him to Dr. Lobo’s clinic with a box of his mother’s freshly prepared mint chocolates.

“Ahhh,” said Dr. Lobo rubbing his pincers in glee.

“We should have a dental awareness week to make sure no one has to go through this agony,” said Din Din on their way back home.

“Yes, that’s a wonderful idea,” Dazel agreed.

So with approval from all three school principals, Din Din, Dazel and Delma made posters about using the Salvadora Persica twig after every meal. Din Din also distributed the twig from the tree he had grown in his own garden.

“It’s commendable how you used your pain to educate others,” said Wiz Rooster. “I’m proud of you.”

And Din Din grinned a pain-free grin.

The Adventures of D'Land
Animated Series

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