Brace Yourself; Parents Are Coming

, , , , , | Healthy | February 28, 2019

(I’m a dental assistant at an orthodontics office where we have several locations, but we switch between locations daily. It’s planned out months in advance for scheduling purposes which doctors and team will be at which location. I’m covering phones for some girls that work front desk because the assistants don’t have any patients when this goes down over the phone. A patient’s Momzilla calls.)

Mom: “My son has a broken bracket again. I need an appointment for today to fix it.”

Me: “All right, well, we’re pretty slow for the next few hours at [location], but if you can come in before the afternoon we can see him.”

(I get the patient info to look at the chart and schedule her son.)

Mom: “You make sure the doctor knows this is an emergency. I have had to come in twelve times already to fix multiple brackets, and he only got his braces on five months ago. This is ridiculous; you all are supposed to know what you’re actually doing there. I’ll be at [location that’s closed] in an hour.”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry about that, but [location I’m at] is the one that’s open today.”

Mom:What? That doesn’t work for me. Didn’t you hear me say this is an emergency? Tell the doctor to come to this office for my son.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but we will be getting busy soon, and our doctor can’t just leave for another location. If you can make it to this one today, I’ll schedule that walk-in, but it’s Friday, and the next day we have appointments at that location isn’t until Wednesday.”


Me: “Okay, well, maybe you should stop letting him have what looks like taffy and caramel popcorn, which we told you he is not allowed to have because it can break his brackets or wire. I assisted the doctor the last three times your son was in, and he also can’t brush out all the bits of those foods from his back teeth, so at this point, there’s nothing we can do if you can’t listen to simple directions.”

(The mom hung up on me, and later called and told the front desk girls that it was no big deal, and they’d just come in on Wednesday.)

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