Sunday, January 31, 2010

January Schmanuary

I haven't been posting as much as ye olde days. Several reasons: It's freaking cold - my fingers get locked up and cold, typing sucks. I also find myself somewhat bitter as a student currently and really don't want to turn this blog into one giant bitch fest, which it already borderline is. Lastly, I just have been lazy with no real excuse.

The third year is going by faster than I would like. Yea I want to graduate, but the stresses of fourth year just don't seem appealing at all after the proverbial xanadu of third year. Yea things still get stressful, but it comes in waves - where as the first two years felt like a constant barrage of studying power point presentations over and over throughout the semester.

The main problem now seems to be economic. The state is not supporting the college much at all it seems and we are losing faculty this coming August. Faculty is the last thing you should be cutting from this education I am paying out the nose for. There just seems to be too much going on for my liking. I just want to get out of here before the school completely implodes. And in all honesty, this is a state school, so I don't see it closing, but you can't help but get a little paranoid with the current state this country is in.

School-wise is going pretty well. I still lack sufficient endo experience, but one of my classmates has generously sent a patient my way that needs two RCTs. Otherwise I am still pretty happy with my slate of experiences. I am getting tired of all these forced in-house rotations though. How many weeks of radiology are really necessary? We have something like 5 during the third year. Overkill.

The month of february: With rotations, mock boards, clinic and research day, and the mid-winter meeting. I have a grand total of 5 (count em') five appointment blocks to actually schedule my own patients. Once fourth year hits, I will be doing at least 60 days of off-site rotations. It is simply getting tough to see patients. And they aren't too thrilled about it either.

Example of this up-coming week. I'm doing a class II performance exam tomorrow morning, then I'm in OS in the afternoon. Tuesday I have screening (which equates to getting a new patient which I have no openings to schedule for) in the morning and OS in the afternoon. Wednesday the clinics are closed for clinic/research day. Thursday I have a patient coming in with 'a toothache.' and in the guessed it, OS. Friday the clinics are closed for the OSCE examination. What is the OSCE exam you ask? I have no freaking idea. They give us zero imformation, tell us to show up with headphones and two number 2 pencils. We are allowed to bring 'any books' we want, just no personal notes. Seriously? Do you want me to lug like 10 different text books to the school? At least I get a free afternoon out of it.

I'm still improving as a dentist. Still slow as shit, but in reality, I realize that is only partly my inexperience. A lot more of it is just doing stuff no practicing dentist has to do. For example, trying to prepare a lingually tipped #31 for a PFM on a patient with a super-active tongue without an assistant. Not possible by the way although I wasted 40 minutes trying until I actually got an assitant to help - I was able to finish in 15 minutes.

I'm just growing tired of the grind that is 'higher' eduaction. There really isn't anything 'higher' about it. The only thing higher I guess is my age and total years spent learning without actually making any sort of income.

I have become a rather lazy student in terms of book work. We have lots of portfolios and presentations this semester along with a bunch of random BS assignments that seem pretty much mandatory at this point. Where I used to churn these things out..I find myself forgetting about them until the week/day before and scrambling to crank them out. I still get the same grade, so it doesn't seem to make any difference how it gets done.

A turn I don't like is the obsession some of my classmates have on 'production' which is the dollar value you have made in terms of procedures completed. Apparently we are graded on this to some degree although the extent I am not sure. But when all some of these people can utter is "oh man, I made 2 k this week." I just get bored real fast and it ends up making me self-aware of my own production and whether or not I'm getting enough done.

To quote my favorite histo teacher from D-1 year. "Who cares."

But gloom and doom aside, I am satisfied with how things are turning out. I have decided to apply to Chicago based GPRs this coming summer. If I don't get into one (or if I don't like the options I end up getting) I will simply become an associate and start chipping away at the massive load of debt.

And now february begins!

PS. I treated this post much like one of those random assignments. Just had to get one in before January 2010 vanished.

Still do check my email from time to time, and I do reply to pretty much anyone that isn't trying to sell me something so ask away!