On The Sixth Day, God Created Receptionists

, , , , | Working | September 2, 2019

(A month ago I had to cancel a dentist appointment due to my mother having an accident. She lives in Northern Ireland and I doubted I would make it back in time — I live in Scotland. My dentist is private and charges for missed appointments. I cancelled three weeks prior to my appointment. After checking my bank statement, I notice a charge has been made. I call up my dentist.)

Me: “I have a charge on my bank statement from you. Could I ask what it was for?” *gives details*

Receptionist: “It’s for a missed appointment. You should have given us six days’ notice.”

Me: “But I cancelled at least three weeks before.”

Receptionist: “…”

Me: “Hello?”

Receptionist: “You have been charged for a missed appointment. You needed to give six days’ notice.”

Me: “I gave you 21 days’ notice!”

Receptionist: “That isn’t six days!”

Me: “So… I need to cancel my appointment exactly six days before?”

Receptionist: “Finally, he gets it!” *hangs up*

(I went into my dentist after work and got everything straightened out. It turns out the receptionist was new and had been charging everyone who had missed appointments who didn’t cancel six days before. I was only the third person to actually call in about the charge, but it prompted the owner to do an investigation. The found that a rather sizeable sum had been accumulated. She no longer works there. The bewildering part about all of this is you need to give at least 24 hour’s notice of cancellation or risk being charged. There has never been a policy there concerning six days. No one knows why she was so adamant about six days. Even she couldn’t answer why.)

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Worse Than Having Teeth Pulled

, , | Healthy | August 9, 2019

(When I was a teenager I had braces. During a holiday, I slipped on a playground and hit a wooden log with my upper front teeth. Because of that, my teeth decided almost ten years later that they didn’t like that; inflammations in the upper jaw were the outcome. Because I am now only in my late twenties, my dentist has tried everything he could so I won’t have to get implant teeth. At the beginning of this year, I had yet another inflammation and his daughter, who took over his office, didn’t feel like she could help me and send me to a specialist a town over. It is kind of important to mention that I live a two-hour train ride away from both dentist offices and go there by train. I do have a dentist in the city where I live but haven’t yet decided how much I can trust him so I mostly have gone there for check-ups and minor issues. This is the first appointment to decide on the treatment and everything related. They make a set of x-rays and I talk to the doctor afterward.)

Dentist: “So, I can see from your history that this is the eighth time you’ll have root canal treatment. Don’t you think you should just get them pulled?”

Me: “Oh, well, I’m really hoping that this is the last time. Because it’s two front teeth, I’d really like to try one more time.”

Dentist: “All right, then, I’ll try to do it. Please speak to the nurse about a date and time, the medication you’re used to, and if you need a certificate for your job that you’re ill and need to stay home. We will try an open healing. You won’t get stitches but a small piece of gauze which will cover the wound. You need to have that changed every three days, which your usual dentist can do.” *leaves*

(I set an appointment and specify which painkillers I usually get prescribed and that I need a certification to prove I am unable to work. Two weeks later is appointment day. I wait an hour and a half in the treatment room before I am finally seen. I don’t say anything because I know it can be busy and I am nervous. The dentist enters the room.)

Dentist: “Good morning!”

(Without another word, he takes the syringe with the local anaesthesia and proceeds to literally ram it into my jaw several times, hitting two nerves along the way. I start crying really hard because it hurts so much, not only because he hit the nerves but also because the area is really sensitive because of all the former scar tissue.)

Dentist: *annoyed* “Ms. [My Name], don’t you think it would have been better if you had a full anaesthesia if you’re already crying so hard?”

(He leaves the room sighing while I try to catch my breath despite the pain I’m in. The nurse shoots me an apologetic look and hands me a handkerchief. The rest of the treatment goes fairly well until it’s time for the gauze thingy to be put over the wound. I have called the dentist in the city where I live and they said they’d do the wound care.)

Dentist: “So, we’re almost done. No need to cry. What do you think? As for the gauze, you’ll need to come in three days to have us change it.”

Me: “But you said I’d be able to let my dentist at home do this.”

Dentist: *in the most condescending tone* “Well, [My Name], you surely realize that we will have to take a look at the wound.”

Me: “No. I told you I live a two-hour train ride away. I am not going to sit in a train for four hours just to have a fifteen-minute appointment.”

Dentist: “Well, if that’s the case, and you’re unwilling to do everything it takes to ensure proper healing, I’ve no other way to help you.” *proceeds to stitch the wound together* “With that, you can come back in two weeks and I promise you that it’ll take more than fifteen minutes.”

(He leaves before I can say anything else.)

Nurse: “Well, here you go. Here’s your prescription for painkillers.”

Me: “But that’s not what I asked for. I can get those cheaper without a prescription. I asked for something stronger because at this point, after so many treatments, I really know the pain and what helps and what doesn’t!”

(The nurse leaves to speak to the dentist. When she comes back in:)

Nurse: “The doctor said you won’t need anything stronger; the treatment does not justify that. Take it or leave it.”

Me: “Then it’s cheaper for me to buy them over the counter. Thanks, but no thanks.”

(I am about to leave when she stops me.)

Nurse: “What do you think you’re doing? You have to wait another thirty minutes to make sure you won’t faint or something.”

Me: “I am really sorry, but I don’t feel comfortable staying here for half an hour. The whole appointment went different from what we decided on and I don’t feel like seeing anyone of you ever again. I don’t want to be rude, but this whole ordeal was an awful experience.”

(She looked annoyed and made me sign a form stating I left against their advice. Because of that “treatment,” I was in pain for four weeks which I’d never had before. It also didn’t stop the inflammations. I am currently sitting at the dentist in my hometown to have both teeth pulled.)

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There Is No Wisdom In Their Filing

, , | Healthy | July 22, 2019

(I am at the dentist for a routine teeth cleaning. I am a new patient as I have recently moved; this is my first appointment at this dentist. Note that I originally scheduled an appointment in the middle of the month, but when I called with a question a few days after making that appointment, the receptionist was able to get me in earlier due to a cancellation. The hygienist takes me back to the room and is asking me some questions about my dental history.)

Hygienist: “And how are your wisdom teeth? Are they still hurting you?”

Me: *confused* “Um… I don’t have wisdom teeth; I was born without any.”

Hygienist: “Your record says that your previous dentist in Saint Louis made a note that you were having some pain from them.”

Me: *now very confused* “I’ve never lived in Saint Louis; I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

Hygienist: “Wait… You’re [My First Name] Smith, right?”

Me: “No, I’m [My First Name] Jones!”

(When the hygienist called me from the waiting room, she had only used my first name, not my last. Turns out the person who had previously been scheduled and then cancelled the appointment I subsequently took had the same first name! I was even more surprised about the mix-up because my first name is not very common.)

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Leave A Black Mark On That Patient’s File

, , , , | Healthy | June 13, 2019

(I work as a dental assistant. After doing some fillings for a patient, I walk her out to the front desk and she stops in the bathroom first. I notice our receptionist is busy with a call, and the dentist doesn’t have another patient for about 15 minutes, so I decide I’ll help out at the front desk and see the last patient out. She comes out of the bathroom and we have this conversation at the desk.)

Patient: “The dentist put a black filling in my mouth!”

Me: “I’m sorry, but there isn’t any such thing as a black filling. I can assure you [Doctor] only placed white composite fillings that match your tooth shade.”

Patient: “It’s right here! It’s black!” *points to a tooth on the opposite side from what we worked on*

Me: “Ma’am, [Doctor] placed fillings on the other side of your mouth. He didn’t touch the tooth you’re pointing to. What your pointing to is a silver amalgam filling that has aged and is no longer shiny, causing it to appear almost black.”

Patient: “No. This was not here before!”

Me: “Ma’am, where is your mouth frozen?”

Patient: *points to the side opposite of tooth she is complaining about*

Me: “That’s the side [Doctor] worked on, not the tooth you notice the dark spot on.”

Patient: “No, he did both. Go check with him or the nurse that was working with him.”

Me: “I am the assistant that was working with him. I’m just helping our receptionist, as she was busy with a call when you first came to the desk, and I can assure you that we did not work on that tooth or that side of your mouth. That is an old silver filling. If it bothers you, we can have the dentist look at it and see if he can replace it, but we’ll need to book you another appointment for that.”

Patient: “No, it’s fine.” *pays and leaves*

Receptionist: “I’m so glad that happened to you and not me.”

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The Ugly Mouth Is The One With The Ugly Words

, , | Healthy | May 18, 2019

(As a teenager I had braces that were – in some way – done incorrectly and over the course of the treatment the enamel of my teeth started to deteriorate. Since I was a quiet and shy teenager, I didn’t speak out and got in a somewhat vicious cycle of dental hygiene since properly cleaning my teeth started to hurt. After a while, I even stopped going to the dentist because I was so ashamed. However, in my twenties, I start seeing an amazing dentist who is very empathetic and doesn’t judge. Session by session, we start ironing things out, but for a very special procedure, he transfers me to a dental surgeon. This takes place at my first appointment before she even takes a look at my teeth.)

Dentist: “Hello, [My Name]. Nice to meet you! May I ask: how old are you?”

Me: “Hi… Um… I’m 24. Why?”

Dentist: “Yeah, I thought so. But from your x-rays, I’d guessed you would be 60.”

Me: *embarrassed* “Yeah, I know. But I try to contain the damage now.”

Dentist: “You’ve got to start cleaning your teeth better!”

Me: “I’m cleaning them at least twice a day now. If you take a look you’ll see. I really started taking dental hygiene very seriously and trying to save what can be saved. But the damage has been done. Still, I really clean my teeth.”

Dentist: “Don’t give me that spiel. I’ve seen how many fillings you have. You do a terrible job of keeping your teeth healthy.”

Me: *miserable* “Yes. I’m very sorry. I know.”

Dentist: “You know how ugly such teeth are, right? You’re 24. Probably looking for a nice girl to marry someday. But I’m gonna tell you right now: with those teeth, you’ll never find a girl!

Me: *on the verge of tears* “I’m really trying to take better care. [Dentist] always told me I’m really doing a good job now. I haven’t had a new cavity in two years.”

Dentist: “Well, I don’t care. Your mouth is ugly. And you’re probably gonna die alone with such bad mouth hygiene. Now, go make an appointment with my receptionist for next month so we can start making you look human again.”

(I didn’t want to object to her, but I didn’t make an appointment and even almost quit the ongoing procedures with my regular dentist. He had to talk to me for an hour until I was ready to keep going. He also said he wouldn’t transfer patients to this dental surgeon anymore.)

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