I made my first trip to the dental health provider many years ago; quite possibly before you were born, so I know of what I speak. There were no “happy face” dentists in those days, unless you consider the practitioner’s expression when you settled up his bill. There were also no concessions to comfort either, unless it was the dentist’s comfort. There was
no “silly gas”, and no stickers or treats when a kid was the patient….. I know.
I recall a letter my mother sent my older sister when I was around 5 years old, telling of a recent trip I made to the dentist. She said the dentist told her: “Mike never made a peep.” then added, “You don’t see many like that.” I suppose the “that” he was referring to was me. The reason I never made a peep was that I was terrified, and I figured if I acted up, well, it could only get worse; if that was possible.
In those ancient times, preventive dentistry wasn’t even heard of. Usually, one went to the dentist when it became painfully necessary. Such was the case for me. I’d already had several permanent teeth removed by the time I married, and the last visit to Dr. Yankem was necessary because of a miserable tooth ache. (Actually, Yankem wasn’t his name, merely an appropriate pseudonym I’ve chosen for him.) A hefty pair of pliers were his tools of the trade, for he did little else, than….yank’em.
I’ve managed to keep the remaining teeth since my last visit to Yankem‘s chamber. However, I must have a few elephant genes, for if there is one thing I remember, it’s virtually every trip to the dentist I’ve made for the last few eons.
I have a “comfortable” dentist these days, Dr. Ed, who has thoughtfully installed TV’s on his operatory ceilings, furnished chaise type chairs for the patient, and plenty of pain deadener…..should the need for such things arise. His office is a pleasant place, and when I show up for the current procedure, he takes time to trade a few jokes, and then does his best to hide the wicked, foot-long needle, that I know is lurking somewhere, just waiting to be jabbed in my mouth.
I spent an hour at his office not too long ago, to have a new crown installed. When Michelle, his dental assistant, produced the new bit of dental enhancement, she discovered that it was gold, rather than porcelain, as are it’s stable mates. Not wanting to achieve a pirate look, I passed on the new attachment. They ordered a replacement. Dr. Ed went on to fix another tooth, and, surprisingly, did it gratis, pro bono, or free, which ever you choose.
And, if that wasn’t enough, he phoned my wife after I left. He told her: “Mike never made a peep.” and added, “You don’t see many like that.”
Well, Janet, here’s your latest posting, and, last week’s gadget was a hair curler for Marcel waves. Good guess.
Now try your hand at this weeks thing-a-ma-jig.