Thursday, October 07, 2010

Knew Better, Did Better: The Dentist

Double Rainbow
Tuesday, I saw a double rainbow that looked a lot like this.
"I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better."  -- Maya Angelou

It had been awhile since I had been to the dentist.  There were dentist complications in my old congregational setting.  Lesson learned:  No matter how well-meaning, don't let the church drop dental coverage when a dentist in the congregation offers to "take care of it"  because if that dentist is against gay marriage, and the denomination, not the congregation, passes a "Marriage Equality Resolution" ... but that's another story.

Then I moved.
Then I got busy.
Then I was scared to break in a new dentist.
And then I did make an appointment for a cleaning with a dental office I found through my dental insurance (yes, I have insurance again!).  The first appointment was two months into the future.  Then I broke a tooth.

My new dentist is a wonder!  When I told him during our first visit that I was afraid, he said I had come to the right place.  I didn't believe him.

My appointment today resulted in a temporary crown, no need for root canal (praise be!), and an appointment in two weeks that I am actually looking forward to.

I asked him how he got to be so good at the "chair side" manner which got an extra-special workout today with this white-knuckled patient. He said he had been taught in dental school that there is a person attached to those teeth.  He sees dental work as simply technique that he has long-ago mastered.  What makes his practice meaningful to him is treating people's anxiety and fear, and not simply their teeth.  I was in very good hands, after all.

Wow!  Simply WOW!


karen anne said...

Lucky you! I had waaaay to many dentists fiddling in my mouth and shooting me in the gums with novacaine as a kid. I dread going. But you've set a good example. Maybe I'll call and make an appt...maybe...

karen anne said...

make that "too" many!

Sharon said...

If you want to drive over here ...

Jayne said...

How wonderful that you were blessed to find someone so patient and caring. Imagine that! A person connected to those teeth! :c)