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back to the dentist story..

im sitting the air conditioned waiting room of a converted brownstone on central park west. i came early because the heat was unbearable outside. my "first time visit" paperwork was filled out and in the hands of the unusually polite and articulate dental receptionists. i flipped though forbes and an issue of national geographic patiently.
at 2:50, only 5 minnutes past my schedule appointment time, I was called. Impressive. In NYC, its not unusual to wait up to an hour after your scheduled appt.

I sat and the chair and looked down at my purple flops. this would all be over in half an hour. i ws nervous, but im always nervous, and generally for no reason. Dr Klein walked in. I know this sound sexist, but I blinked when I saw it was Dr ALISON Klein. Ive never had a female dentist before. Dentist and man seem to go hand in hand. this was cool. good timing and woman dentist .
very cool.
until she started working. unlike most dentists, she didnt just check my teeth and run along. She did the whole cleaning proceedure. Ack!.
She had me open and pushed her hook down as hard as possible into my back teeth. No pain. We did some x-rays: no cavities.
"Now to cleans," she says. Ack!
She opened up a bad full of steril tools: hooks and horrible short pointed metal things" I flinched. The put a hook on a hanlde that was plugged into the wall. When turned on it made this high pitched noise worse thatn a drill. She shoved it up under my gums and in between my teeth like the hook, but it was mechanical. I kept yelling out. I squeezed my sweater so hard i could feel the sweat from my palm soaking through. I thought I was going to die and I tried to convinve myself to hold still. finally, I could stand it no longer. I yelled out stop!! (the best I could with my mouth open.

She says" seems like you have never had a cleanign with one of these" I shook my head. No way in hell!
She picked up the hook and started scraping inbetween the teeth on the front teeth...top and bottom on the back side. It felt like she was pulling off cement or something. Then the hook dove between the two top teeth, in the back. I could have sworn she dug it right into my gums and ripped them down the middle. I dried out.

"rinse" she said"
I rinsed. Blood and more blood. I was worried for my mouth. I had a headache. that drill was still reverberating though my brain.

Next came the gum test. She put a hook into my gums between each tooth twice and announcced a number to her assistant. it was like a pin prick over and over and over into my already hurtng gums. I was so unhappy. Id never had this done before either.
More blood.

Polishing was the usual spinny thing with the bad tasting floride paste. fine.
My mouth hurt all afternoon.

Im never going back there ever. I hope what she did was actually good for my teeth. I dont know. it looks like i have a scrape across my front gum. ouchc


( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 3rd, 2002 04:10 pm (UTC)
When was the last time you had a cleaning? The gums can be really sore if you don't floss enough. The plaque (sp?) does get stuck on like cement and needs a strong scrapping as well. I've had a couple people really hurt when I was getting my gums cleaned (with dental floss even!) but when they explained it wouldn't hurt if I would clean more at home, I found out they were right. If it doesn't hurt when you're doing it at home for the first week, you're probably not doing it right. Your gums will be a little puffy, but it goes away after they "beef up". a little pain now is better then dentures tomorrow! If she took the time to do it right, she might be worth giving another visit. As you say she didn't just poke and run.
Aug. 4th, 2002 07:49 am (UTC)
i hadnt gone for 3 years, cause i didnt have insurance. i know it was going to be bad...but all those NEW tools! scary!
the only mechanical tool anyone has used on me was the polish machine thing. ive only had one cavity, and that was a surface one. (knock on wood, of course)
Aug. 7th, 2002 02:26 pm (UTC)
just went myself...
and had to go throught the same drill. What they do is remove some stuff (not sure what it is called in english) that becomes hard, stonelike almost... it is a lot better when you have it done each year. But it's not exactly my favoorite thing either. Then again, I have to go back twice to fill 3 cavities, so it may have been the 'best' part of the whole deal after all :-(
Aug. 3rd, 2002 05:15 pm (UTC)
You should do that every half year. It really _is_ good for your teeth.
Forget the pain and discomfort. Just focus on happy thoughts as she's
digging that metal hook deeper into your gums.
Remember, pain is how you can tell you're alive ;)
Aug. 3rd, 2002 06:43 pm (UTC)
I'm scared of the dentist. heh I won't go. Luckily my teeth are in pretty good shape, though one of em is crooked. Probably needed braces when I was growing up but ah well. My girl don't mind, so why should I? :) It's barely noticable anyway. I remember going to the dentist when I was a lil girl and it was one of the most traumatic experiences of my life. Eeek!
Aug. 4th, 2002 04:08 am (UTC)
I go three times a year, since I have perfect teeth but the gums of a sixty-year-old or something.

Karde hit it right on. Going to the dentist regularly is important if you don't want horrible breath from gum disease and then have your teeth fall out of your head.
Aug. 4th, 2002 05:10 pm (UTC)
My Dentist has a Hygenist to do that stuff. Guess this Allison works on a small budget, lol. There are bad Hygenists and good ones. Although, after 3 years anyone would seem bad I guess. I go 2 to 3 times a year depending on how scuzzy my teeth feel. For a while I went every 3 months because my body was in a plaque faze for some reason. Now every 6 mo. has been ok. My dental hygenist uses the new thing that sounds like a drill, but it doesn't hurt at all. I think the combination of a 3 year lapse, plus she probably was too rough, was the problem. My Dentist hired an oriental woman that was a torture! I told them that if she was still with them in 6 months, not to expect to see me! So, some hygenists can be awful! She WAS gone on my next visit!
Aug. 7th, 2002 09:52 am (UTC)
i dunno how they do it in idaho, but since i was a kid they always used the drill thingy on me for cleanings. be happy knowing your teeth are clean now and keep on a floss'n. i wish i had gone to the dentist when i was in nyc and still had dental. i have to wait now until my benefits kick in again. i think its been about 3 years for me too. not looking forward to it.
Aug. 25th, 2002 05:48 pm (UTC)
Getting them teeth clean...
what she used on you was a sonic scaler, most likely. it still has the hooks to physcially scrape. you know all that toothpaste that says it reduces tartar buildup? that's what it's used to get rid of. the second device measures nerve conductivity. it's for determining tooth and gum health.

if you keep up the good dental care, the next time you go back, you shouldn't need all of that. for folks who take less care, it does get worse.

all this from your friendly former dealtal assistant... Tracie from the chat room.
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )