During my trip to Sweden/Denmark I’ve developed a severe dental problem: before I left I had a root canal treatment at my usual dentist. She had already warned me that there was a infection present and I would have to expect some unpleasant symptoms in the first few days. Me, being a man with a body, that under normal circumstances functions well without giving any unpleasant symptoms, would have preferred to isolate myself from humanity during this period of expecting suffering (I suppose find a dark corner in my cave where the wild animals would not smell my apparent vulnerability) – but 70th birthday of my mother in law as a fixed milestone event did not permit such flexibility. The day after the root canal procedure and the flight to Copenhagen I had some, albeit manageable pain. The following day, however, my face turned into a half sided chipmunk and, despite generous application of Ibuprofen, a rather noticeable pain was prevalent. This went on for another day (Friday!) and when I sat down for dinner on Friday evening I felt that NOW would be the right time to have my tooth ripped out, stomp on it a few times and throw it into the sea. So, I called a Danish emergency number, who referred me to an emergency dental practice in Copenhagen (Tandlægevagten, Oslo Plads 14, 2100 Copenhagen Ø. Tel.: (+45) 1813) – and it turned out to be great: the dentist spoke perfect English, so communication was no problem, he showed sufficient signs of compassion so I felt taken care off and, most importantly, he described exactly what he was going to do so I felt under control. Excellent. He relieved the pressure, wrote me a prescription for antibiotics and bingo – I was a whole person again. He also recommended a slightly more drastic approach to pain management and suggested 800mg of Ibuprofen combined with 1000mg of Paracetamol. That was news to me (I checked whether liver transplants were on offer in Copenhagen, too), but, having been more than slightly desperate, I followed the advice and Bingo! – no pain.

So, while I was more than reluctant to try out a dentist in a country as remote and foreign as Denmark I was pleasantly surprised about the competent and friendly treatment I had received. Excellent. One thing, though: they only accept payment by Dankort (usually not available to travelling foreigners) or cash. So bring some cash.