Dentist, Why Do You Ask Me Questions?

The dentist was on my schedule.

Yes, a cavity appeared and it had to be mended.

As I entered the building, my anxiety started about the whole event. Yep, I have some trauma from childhood regarding dentists. I must schedule therapy for that, too. Long story short, I have an IDP (individual dentist plan). I am that patient that has a pop window announcing my gag reflex and ability to pass out on the spot.

I checked in, spoke to the assistant, and passed the other poor patients. Strangely, Sarah McGauglin’s song Arms of an Angel played in my head. You know the song, “In the arms of the angel…” Then sad puppies’ faces appeared in my mind. Okay, I can be dramatic, but that actually happened! After walking by other victims, I asked for my curtain to be closed. The assistance listened to my request. I didn’t want to anyone to see my sad eyes and feel bad for me, too. Donations would be great, but not necessary.

I tried to adjust my small frame into the plastic chair that reminds me of a scary old surgical chair or a modified electric chair. Yes, I dislike (hate) the dentist. I am surprised the chair doesn’t come with straps.

I wish the dentist was like the spa. I would love aromatherapy diffusers, dimmed lights and maybe even massaging chairs. Honestly, I will pay for a fancy massage chair like at the mall to sit in while having my teeth picked at. My office has TVs which are nice additions but watching the current news is like having my teeth drilled so no thank you to that addition.

The doctor numbed my mouth, tried to explain the procedure and walked away to have the solution work its way into my gum line.

This is the best part!

As he began his work, he started to ask me questions.

What? I have a numbed right side and three different instruments in my face. When he started picking at my teeth, seven dwarfs started to sing to me. So, I closed my eyes thinking of a mining cave, gems and an evil witch (dentist). When I opened my eyes, the light beamed into my face and all I could see were these scary bug eyes peering at me. Too bad it wasn’t a diamond.

Of course like all dentists, he began the interrogation.

“How are you doing?” he asked.
I couldn’t respond.
He asked again.

I couldn’t respond except in my mind, “Are you kidding me? You are asking me questions at this exact moment when I am most vulnerable and can’t communicate back.”

I thought quickly. I raised my hand. Thumbs up.

He said, “Okay, good.”
He said, “Spit.”
I followed directions.
He said, “This is almost over.”
Praise the lord…
He asked again, “How are you?”

I replied, “Fine. Thanks for asking. I will be straight with you. Let’s make this fast like a Nascar tire change. I just want to go and get this over with like high school. This is not my favorite thing so I am going to lay back down and repeat in my head over and over again: There is No Place Like Home. Nothing personal, but I will leave this place as fast as I can and not look back.”

He said, “Okay.”

My cavity was filled in twenty minutes with no gagging. Impressive!

Advice for the Day: 

  1. Say want you what.
  2. If you are struggling to communicate, find ways to tell each other that you are listening (thumbs up or down).
  3. State how you are feeling and move on to the next thing with clear, direct communication. 🙂

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