From the Dentist Chair



The second of May with the 2pm meeting with Craig was getting nearer. I kept looking at the Dental appointment reminder stuck on the fridge held by a magnet. There was no need really. The friendly secretary reminded me of this looming meeting by phone the day earlier. No escape! My internal mouth machinations had already been investigated a few weeks before. The dentist then (Craig) tried to keep up a cheerful demeanour but there was just that split second furrowed brow on his face that hinted at a serious dental journey ahead. At least, there wasn’t a; ‘dear oh dear,’ or a sudden catch of breath from him. The verdict was that all could be saved and an itemised quote would be mailed. It came promptly within a few days. I divided the amount by the number of years I had not visited the dentist. It softened the blow. After checking my savings account I bravely decided to go and front up with the remainder of my mouth, tormented teeth and savings account.

Has anyone noticed that doctors’ waiting rooms have chairs, yet dentists’ rooms have couches or settees? Craig’s waiting room has soft carpet, a kind of grey-beige colour, not unlike the colour of my teeth. It is nicely furnished with three and two seater settees. Not only that! The secretary is also in the same room, cosily seated behind a desk. You can hear her talking demurely in the phone or clicking on the computer. She occasionally threw a reassuring glance over the patient. I was the only patient, so it was nice to know I wasn’t alone. I would not want a stern secretary with all that is awaiting. No, you’ve got to give it to Craig. There is calm and serenity. But, is it before the oral storm yet to unleash its fury?

I have fainted only twice in my life. The first time was in church. Where else?  I was about eleven or twelve and hungry. I had not eaten because this church laid down a law that if you were to receive communion you could not eat. The church had lots of laws that forbade almost anything that was joyful or gave pleasure. Gloom and doom was installed at a very young age. It was winter and standing room only. The church was coal heated with the hot air welling up through steel grates on the floor at the back of the church. I was standing at the back of the church on top of this grate, ready to bolt as soon I received this wafer that promised I would be with angels in case I carked it. ( but only if I had not sinned in the meantime.) I fainted and remember coming around with a woman holding me up telling me to go home. I got hot chips with pickles instead from money mum had given me to put in the collection bag. It used to do the rounds in the church attached to a long wooden stick held by a sickly looking man. A bit like a fishing-rod. Since then I put buttons in and keep the money! A wise move.

While waiting to be called into the dentist’s surgery I was mulling over the fainting history of many years ago. My worst fear was that in my heightened state of a grinding dental infused anxiety, I would not be able to get up from the settee, and instead crumble and fall prostrate in front of the dentist. It would not be a good look in front of the nice reassuring secretary that I had previously given a list answering many questions including an answer to the question about my level of nervousness. I filled in that I had no nervousness at all.

Readers will be happy to know I made it to the dentist chair without much drama.





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9 Responses to “From the Dentist Chair”

  1. leggypeggy Says:

    Whew, a close call.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Peggy.
      Another three appointments yet to come. He said he will do a corner inside my mouth at the time. This dentist does it all from behind and one doesn’t actually see much of him. There is just a gentle murmuring of what he intends to do next. “I will now start planing the back of your two teeth roots now”, he enthused.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. shoreacres Says:

    I’ve only fainted once, although I’ve come close a couple of other times. The fainting was in a dentist’s office, actually. I was in grade school, and had been there for just a check-up. I had one baby tooth that was very nearly gone. It was just dangling, swinging in the wind. The dentist said, “Before you do, why don’t we just get rid of that?”, and plucked it right out. I didn’t even feel it, but I passed out and went face down on the floor.

    No damage was done, and I got a malted milk on the way home.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Linda. The second time I fainted was a few years ago. I went to the local hospital emergency section. I had a very painful chest. The emergency doctor thought I might have pneumonia. An X-ray of my lungs was suggested. As I lifted my arms for the X-ray, I passed out. It was painful.

      I next woke up on a chair with a concerned doctor looking at me.
      For a short moment I thought I had landed in heaven with the white uniformed doctor and nurses surrounding me.

      It wasn’t to be yet, and instead landed in a bed with a kind nurse bringing me a cup of tea and a lovely sandwich.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. hilarycustancegreen Says:

    Interesting contrast! Our GP has upholstered benches and is entirely free; our dentist has a flickering fire, soft armchairs and sofas, free tea and coffee and all the (better) daily papers… and costs the clothes on your back and some. Actually, most of my clothes come from charity shops and would pay for an ounce of floss at our dentist. Hope the great overhaul is going smoothly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Hilary. With my short stay once in a private hospital for a vitrectomy I had 5 star service. The menu available from a computer that was dangling within reach of my pillow. Eye fillet with creamed cauliflower avec petit pomme de terre.

      A Government hospital gives no choice, just a cheese sandwich or spuds with chook.
      Dental care is not government subsidized, so one has to have money or go toothless and hope no one notice it.

      I forked out $ 535.- last Tuesday. And that is just the beginning. If it was possible to get dental care from a Vinnies or Salvo’s shop I would definitely go there.

      We love going to charity shops and Helvi too mainly dresses herself from top brand second hand clothes. Many do the same.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. kaytisweetlandrasmussen83 Says:

    So relieved, but not pleased that you still have more to come. They just don’t give up do they?

    Liked by 1 person

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