Tricksy dentistses.

the dentist
noun
1. The place where a dentist works. – Merriam-Webster1
2. An office where I pay for the privilege of being poked in the gums with sharp objects.
The Nut


Once upon a time, in a fairy tale realm called Childhood, I had free dental care under my father’s company health plan, a set of baby teeth that were just going to fall out anyway, and a stay-at-home mom to schedule my appointments as well as chauffeur me to my semiannual tooth checkups.

In those hallowed days, visit to the dentist were pure and simple. I walked in, I spent a slightly uncomfortable half hour having my mouth manhandled, I got to pick a prize from the Drawer of Treasures, and I walked right back out.

Now, as a firmly established citizen of Adulthood, I’ve decided we have this prize thing all backwards. I mean, have another look at the paragraph above. All it really boils down to is that I got rewarded for sitting in a goddamn chair.

These days, I have to jump through ten times more hoops in order to sit in that chair, and I get nothing in return but good oral hygiene.

That’s kind of bullshit, isn’t it? I’m not wrong, am I?

In the land of Adulthood, there’s nobody to set up those dreaded dentist visits for you. Oh sure, the receptionist sends you a reminder postcard with a smiling tooth on it every now and then so you won’t forget. But you’re the one who has to psych yourself into actually picking up that phone and setting a date for your next rendezvous with the Lady of Pain (I’m kidding, Tara, you’re a very nice person…when you’re not stabbing me with pointy things)

And you’ll suck it up and do it, because all your convenient childhood practice teeth fell out years ago and unless you’re super into the idea of sporting dentures before you reach middle age, you’re fresh out of do-overs.

Then you have to keep the appointment.

But in Adulthood, there are no kindly mother figure chauffeurs. When D-Day arrives, it’s up to you to get yourself there. You’ve got a driver’s license and you’re old enough to use public transit without a chaperone. Unless they plan on knocking you out (and god help you if they do), you can damn well take yourself to that appointment.

Depending on what you’re having done that day, walking into the office can feel a bit like approaching Jigsaw and asking him if you can try out one of those kooky traps of his you keep hearing about.

But you go in regardless. You march in of your own volition and you sit in that chair knowing full well what’s coming – because you called and literally asked for it – and you fucking deal with it like the grown-ass man or woman you are.

And in Adulthood, once you’ve had the pleasure of spending the better part of an hour with the taste of sterile gloves and cold metal instruments omnipresent in your mouth, you get to pay for it.

Let’s recap, shall we?

Dentist visits as a child: Free ride, free oral care, free toothbrush, and a prize.

Dentist visits as an adult: Gas/transit fees, X-ray bill, dental cleaning/procedure bill, misc. extras bill, free toothbrush (okay, so some things don’t change), and…uh…the satisfying aftertaste of “Attempted Mint” flavor polishing paste?

So. Who deserves a prize more? Me, or some little shit whose mommy is going to take him out for ice cream after the appointment?

In Adulthood, you take yourself out for the ice cream, pay for it, and spend the rest of the day feeling guilty and fat over downing a 780 calorie Oreo Cheesecake Blizzard in one sitting.

Okay maybe that’s just me.

Now gimme my goddamn ring with the fake ruby in it.

Where is the precioussssssssss? Β  Photo by Dan Hatton on Flickr.


Today’s blog post was brought to you by the letter D, the number 32, and the WhyDoYouOnlyAskMeQuestionsWhenYourHandsAreInMyMouth Challenge, AKA the Blogging A to Z Challenge.

1 “the dentist.” Merriam-Webster.com. Merriam-Webster, 2015. Web. 4 April 2015.

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17 thoughts on “Tricksy dentistses.

  1. I have been having an epic chain of dentist visits over the last year (Hashimoto’s apparently destroys enamel, yayyy), not helped by the fact that dentists in Japan never FINISH what they start the same day, so a cavity filling can take up to three visits just to be completed. 3 VISITS. In the meantime, I’m stuck with a plastic filling that may or may not fall out and get swallowed during dinner 😦 I want my prize, too.

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  2. Very true. I always find the dentist seems to be a game of how many instruments can fit in my mouth in one go – the little mirror, the scraper thing, the thing that sprays water in your mouth and then the thing that sucks it back up again.

    I have to mentally chant “breath through your mouth, breath through your mouth” otherwise there is a real risk of me gagging. Such fun!

    Stopping by from A To Z πŸ™‚

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    • I love the water sprayer. Pure heaven. The sucky thing is kind of a novelty; when I was a kid I got to hold onto it during fluoride application so that was always sort of fun.

      The rest I could do without, lol.

      I think the worst time I ever had not gagging was when I had to get molds of my teeth taken for braces. The bottom one was fine, but they fill that top mold up so full…blech. Closest I ever had to getting a full-blown panic attack.

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  3. Before every dental visit I listen to “I Am Your Dentist” from the musical version of Little Shop of Horrors. It makes me feel a little better going in because it could be so much worse. My dentist is only slightly sadistic.

    Liked by 1 person

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