Having suffered at the hands of the dentist yesterday – and I do suffer, with the only consolation that, as a writer, I may later find it useful to know what it feels like to have hysterics – I was glad to see that the old Especialidades Juanse tiles are still in place in Madrid’s Malasaña district.The one on the left in the photo is the most relevant, as it exhorts those with dolor de muelas to use odontológico Juanse and encourages the use of perborato de sosa aromatizado for cleansing mouth and teeth.
Freedictionary.com tells em that sodium perborate is:
A white odorless crystalline compound, NaBO2·H2O2·3H2O, used as a mild alkaline oxidizing agent in dentifrices, as a topical antiseptic and deodorant, and as an industrial reagent.
That sounds quite unpleasant, but probably no moreso than a modern toothpaste or mouthwash would if I actually read the small print.
I fear I didn’t manage to look quite so pale and interesting as the lady in the Juanse advert as I sobbed uncontrollably in the dentist’s chair yesterday. Never mind, I have more appointments booked, so plenty of opportunities to practise.