Your Threats Are Toothless

| Fort Worth, TX, USA | Working | May 4, 2017

(I go to the dentist’s for a cleaning.)

Dental Assistant: “Your teeth are yellow!”

Me: “Yup.”

Dental Assistant: “You should get them whitened.”

Me: “No, thanks.”

Dental Assistant: “We have several options for you…” *explains about strips and trays and stuff*

Me: “No, thank you.”

Dental Assistant: “But you’re such a pretty girl! Your teeth just ruin it!”

Me: “That’s okay.”

Dental Assistant: “But don’t you care about dating? What will the boys think?”

Me: “It’s fine.”

(I’m not straight, not seeking a partner, not interested in judgemental people.)

Dental Assistant: “And what about getting a job?! You’ll never get one with those teeth!”

Me: “Okay.”

(I have a job.)

Dental Assistant: “But your teeth! You know, if you’re worried about cost, we have payment plans!”

Me: “No, thank you.”

Dental Assistant: “You should really whiten your teeth!”

Me: “No. Thank. You.”

Dental Assistant: “Don’t you care about your appearance at all?”

Me: “No! I don’t! I really don’t care what they look like!”

(The dental assistant rushes out of the room and heads straight for my mother.)

Dental Assistant: “Your daughter doesn’t care about her teeth AT ALL! She said she’d rather let them rot! She doesn’t take care of her teeth whatsoever and she’s going to have so many cavities and it’s going to cost you a fortune!” *continues this rant for a while*

(I never went back to that place again. My mother tried to lecture me based on what the assistant said, but I pointed out that the dentist did not say I had cavities and managed to hold off the “necessary” whitening treatments until the next check-up at the new place. Luckily, they backed me up. Stained does not mean ill-cared-for or unhealthy.)

Taking A Floss Loss

| UK | Right | March 16, 2017

(I am a receptionist for a private dental practice. At this practice, we offer a cleaning service for those who have difficulty flossing, usually due to discomfort or their teeth are positioned as such that it makes flossing difficult. The service usually costs between £60-120 per year, but is free for those above 40 and who have been with the practice for over 10 years. You can drop by at anytime for the clean, which takes no more than 5 minutes. The patient in this story has had no difficulty with flossing her teeth; she simply doesn’t care for the process. She meets the requirements for the free service, however, so her dentist has offered it regardless. The cost is added to her sixth month checkup and discounted on the same invoice, so her last checkup cost her £0.00. She storms into the practice one afternoon, with the invoice we have mailed to her in hand. Up until now, she has been nothing but civil with us.)

Me: “Hello, Mrs. [Patient]. How can we help you today?”

Patient: “This! This is unacceptable!”

Me: “Your invoice?”

Patient: “No! This cost! I’m not paying for this! I have been with this practice for 20 years! I deserve a discount.”

(I check the invoice to be certain the discount has been included. It has.)

Me: “Mrs. [Patient], the cleaning service has already been discounted.” *points at total* “See? It is costing you nothing.”

Patient: “It’s still too much. Discount it!”

Me: “But, I can’t. There’s nothing to discount.”

Patient: “DISCOUNT IT!”

Me: “Mrs. [Patient], the only way it could be discounted further would be to pay you for the service.”

Patient: “Get on with it, then!”

Me: “You want us to pay you?”

Patient: “YES!”

(When I refused she stormed out saying she would never come back. She called today to arrange her next checkup. According to her records, she hasn’t used the cleaning service once, so all that has come out of it is earache on my end.)

Making The Mouth Clean And Dirty At The Same Time

| USA | Friendly | March 13, 2017

(I am attending my first appointment in a new dentist’s office. I’m always a little hesitant to start with a new dental group, not knowing if the new dentist and their assistants will be friendly or not. The hygienist is chatty with me in a friendly manner while she checks my teeth and enters her findings into the computer system.)

Hygienist: “Okay, so next I’ll do a quick cleaning, and then I’ll bring Dr [Dentist] in. She’s great; my absolute favorite. I’d let her do anything she wanted to me.”

(She sits up and removes the tools from my mouth.)

Hygienist: “Wow. That sounded wildly inappropriate when I said it out loud. Please forget I said that, okay?”

(I had to laugh. I think I’ll get along with this new dental group just fine!)

The First (Nation) Of Many Problems

| Montreal, QB, Canada | Working | March 11, 2017

(I have been roughhousing with my brother and break my tooth, so my mother takes me to our dentist. We are First Nations (Indian) and as such my dental care, prescriptions, eye care, etc. are covered by a special governmental insurance. This means we don’t have much if anything to pay for my dental care. As soon as my dentist sees me, she starts to panic.)

Dentist: “Oh, my goodness… How did you do this? Why now of all times?”

Me: “Um, I don’t know? It was an accident.” *goes on to explain what I did*

Dentist: “Oh, boy. Oh, no. Why did you have to do this? Why now?”

(As she’s saying this she’s pacing around the small examining cubicle and rubbing her head and face nervously.)

Mom: “Um, excuse me but it’s none of your business why this happened. It’s your job to fix the problem.”

Dentist: “I’m sorry, it’s just… it’s just that it’s the end of the fiscal year and Indian Affairs only covers a certain amount per year of treatment. You’ve already used quite a bit and I’m just scared they won’t cover this treatment.”

Mom: “That doesn’t sound right… She had her checkup and cleaning but nothing else.”

Me: “I had a filling done and some X-rays.”

Dentist: “Yes! And that used up a lot of your allotted insurance. I’m just concerned for your daughter… If I can’t fix it the only other thing I can do is pull it out and no little girl should have to lose a front tooth. Especially during her growing years. Yes, I’m sure they will understand if I explain it to them that way. Ooohh, why did you have to do this now?! What were you thinking?!”

Mom: “EXCUSE ME?!”

Dentist: “I’m sorry! I’m so sorry. I’m just worried about your daughter, and her beautiful smile. I’m just… ok. Let’s get started here.”

(She went on to explain that she was going to file my tooth down to the core and fit me with a replacement tooth. She took a mold of my tooth, did the filing, and fit me with a temporary crown. She told me I would have to come back when the permanent crown is ready. In the meantime the dentist informed my mother that Indian Affairs wouldn’t cover the procedure but that she would highly discount the cost of the work as a courtesy and worked out a payment arrangement. My mother was not happy about this and contacted the department of Indian Affairs to find out more about why they were refusing to cover the procedure. About a week after getting my permanent crown my mother got a phone call from Indian Affairs. They asked her to confirm that I received certain dental work over the past two years, procedures which I had never had, such as a root canal, several other fillings, and even some cosmetic procedures. My mother assured them they must have the wrong file as I had only my routine visits and cleanings as well as the one X-ray and filling. Months later we found out that my dentist’s clinic was closed down; apparently she had been fraudulently charging Indian Affairs for procedures that were never done on several of her First Nations patients. It seemed that I wasn’t the first patient to be declined coverage because of her fraudulent activities and the calls to Indian Affairs tipped them off. In the end we only paid $100 for the treatment and the crown has held up well 18 years later.)

An Underage Drinking Story To Make You Laugh

| Madison, WI, USA | Related | January 12, 2017

(I have my wisdom teeth pulled when I am 17. As soon as they tell me they are using laughing gas I start breathing that in as fast as I can because, well, I am 17. After they take the mask off and wait for me to pass out I start talking to the doctor like a chipmunk on crack.)

Me: “Woo! Good stuff. I’m not really into drugs, I mean I’ve tried a bunch but the side effects never sit well with me so I just don’t do them. I have done whippits though. Awesome! Kind of like this. This is great but I’m more of a drinker. OH! About a month ago I went to a house party where the guy’s parents weren’t home and the cops got called. I walked out the back door and stood by a bush and just watched as these two cops chased around everyone else. They had no clue I was there because luckily I wear all black all the time. Hey, you are really cute for a dentist… How old…”

(And then I realize he is looking over my head at the door. I turn my head and see my mother standing there.)

Me: “How long has she been there? You could–” *whipping my head around back to the dentist* “–warn a girl! You are so not getting my number now.”

(I think I finally blacked out after that. When I woke up I had a mouth full of cotton and kept telling my mom I was excited to eat ice cream. Oddly enough, my mother has never asked me about the underage drinking story I was telling so I think I’m in the clear. It has been 15 years.)

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