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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Dress for the occasion

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

I have said at times that one of the benefits of being middle age plus is that you no longer feel strongly about being in style. Our favorite cartoon, "Maxine," states that she thinks the perfect bra is a sweatshirt. Maybe that is going a little too far. But there are certain occasions when it is very important to think carefully about what you should wear.

The social life of many middle age plus folk is centered on doctors. Consider what you should wear when going to see a dentist. He, or she, will not notice much about what type of shirt or blouse you are wearing because by the time the Dentist has entered your area, you have usually already been bibbed up. Your skirt or slacks are not noticed much either because your clenched hands in your lap draw the attention away from the material of your clothing. But what is really noticed when you are in a dentist chair is your shoes. Often you spend several minutes alone in the chair awaiting the effects of a shot, or waiting for the personnel to come join you. What do you look at during those times? Your feet. They are raised to eye level and shoes that looked fine on the floor this morning can show every scuff and blemish when under the bright lights of the office. To keep company with the clenched hands in your laps, the feet are often crossing and uncrossing during the procedure which may draw even more attention to their sorry state. This is especially true if you have walked across some melting snow or a bit of moist earth before entering the premises. But what about other doctors? How should you dress for those visits? Most of us would like to dress so that whatever portion of your body must be viewed can be examined without a wholesale disrobing for wearing the pretty paper gowns that don't offer much warmth or modesty either. So a two-piece outfit usually works better. Some middle age plus patients have troubles with buttons so a pull over top might work better, but then your hair gets messed up and then you will really look sicker than you actually are.

Eye doctors cause less problems as far as dress is considered, but the intimate eye to eye examination can give worries about bad breath. Since this is one of your social events of the day you don't want to knock out the good doctor with halitosis. A breath mint before going into the office can relieve that tension if you don't have problems choaking on the melting mint.

The audiologist is another problem. You are not supposed to put anything in your ear smaller than your elbow they say, but if the doctor is looking into your ears with his bright light how can you be sure what is awaiting his examination in those inner reaches? Your clothing doesn't matter much here but you do want to be sure you have followed your mother's admonition to wash behind your ears before you go.

If you are lucky enough to know any of these professionals personally you can relax about your garb on the day of the visit. They have probably seen you through the years wearing all sorts of outfits and aren't judging you because of this particular visit.

But I'd still advise polishing your shoes before going to the dentist.

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Carolyn Gray Thornton
Middle Age Plus