From the things you will never hear file: “I cannot wait to go to the dentist! It’s one of my favorite places to go!”
I recently had my dental cleaning and found that some old fillings needed to be replaced, and a new cavity had to be filled. It is hard enough for me to go to get the cleanings, although technology has made it a bit easier. The feeling of that metal scraper on my teeth is worse than fingernails on a chalkboard! Now, they do most of the cleaning with this high pressure of water, but they still end up having to come in with that metal hook. After they get done with the scraping, the actual dentist comes in and begins poking and prodding around in there. That’s when they spring the news on you. “You’ll need to have a couple of those filled”.
I need to be honest, they are really lucky that I go back to have it done. The only thing worse than that hook, is the drill. I tell them that I want the gas and the shot. I don’t want to feel any of that pain. I tried just the gas once, I remember you can still feel the pain, but you kind of don’t care. You sit there and say to yourself, “Ouch! You are really hurting me! You stupid bastard, If I wasn’t so out of it, I would punch you right in the mouth!” You also white knuckle it through the whole thing. I think my fingers left indents on the arm of the chair from squeezing it so hard.
The shot helps a bit, because it numbs you up. But you are more aware of other stuff, like the smell of the smoke from the tooth that they are drilling the hell out of to get rid of the cavity. I’m sorry, but that’s just not something I want to be aware of it. I usually need extra Novocain, which causes another problem – I’m numbed up for hours. There is nothing worse than accidentally biting your cheek because you’re still numb. It also sucks when you’re trying to drink a refreshing beverage.
So when I go – I get both. Call me a baby, I don’t care. I want to be in that “I don’t care” state when you give me the shots and I want to be numb when you carve up my tooth. This time they let me listen to music. They put on Pandora and I listened to Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack channel while they worked. The only problem is, at one point, the channel must have gotten to the “are you still listening?” screen, because the music stopped. Then I got to listen to the dentist tell the other gal about his weekend plans instead – a lot less entertaining.
One dentist office I went to had Netflix or a DVD player. I was able to watch Sanford and Son while they worked on me. Only problem was, at one point, you get so lost in the gas, that I remember missing chunks of the show. While that was nice, the downside was a dentist with bad breath. I kept thinking, “I know you have a stock pile of little Listerine bottles, because you give me two or three when I leave, try to swish some around before you come in to work on a patient.
The latest trend at the dentist is they take your blood pressure. I have hypertension that is controlled by meds, but they always tell me, “You’re pressure is a bit high.” I automatically think, “I see that damn metal hook on the tray right in front of me – of course, it’s high!!!”
As much as I have complained about the dentist, I will say that my last experience was a good one. I just wish it wasn’t so expensive. It seems to me that no matter where you go, dental insurance doesn’t cover squat. The bill is always a ton of money. It always seems to me that the insurance companies only want to cover like 10-20% of the bill and stick you with the rest. I hate that, but it does remind me of a good joke to close with:
A woman called up her dentist to complain about her bill. She yelled and screamed and told the dentist, “This bill is three times higher than what you normally charged and I want to know why!”
The dentist replied, “You screamed so loud while we were working on your teeth last time that you scared away two other patients and I had to make up the difference somehow!”
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