July 18, 2014

July 18, 2014

Service for a Smile

There I was, minding my own business enjoying some delicious reheated Trader Joe’s pizza, when I felt it.

A crunch. Right about where my chipped-in-two-places cavity filling was. Immediately, I spit out my pizza*, grabbed the mirror I use for flossing, and checked out the situation.

Missing: One cavity filling.

Now, keep in mind that I have a severe—A SEVERE—aversion to saliva. Blood? Fine. Poop? Fine. Spit? Pardon me while I lose the entire contents of my stomach and then pass out.

So we were already on pretty shaking ground here, but I had to determine whether I had already eaten the filling and thus was about to die of heavy metal poisoning (assumption). Hence my spitting out the pizza I was eating as soon as I realized what was happening. The part of my brain that fears eating metal works faster than the part of my brain that’s afraid of spit.

Without getting into too much detail, let’s just say that I located the filling. I felt about it how I assume people feel about kidney stones, babies, etc. “This used to be a part of my body. I want to keep it.” I popped it in a teeny plastic bag that at some point must have held a spare button or something. Why did I have it in my desk drawer? Because my office desk drawers are like Mary Poppin’s carpet bag. I have one of everything in there.

Coincidentally, I’d already scheduled an appointment with my dentist for an exam and cleaning. I love (LOVE) going to the dentist, so I was looking forward to it. This filling incident, though, put a new spin on things. Some brief Googling convinced me to call and set up a second appointment to get the filling replaced. (Also according to Google: I either could or SHOULD NOT UNDER ANY MEANS use gum as a temporary replacement.) I realized it would probably have to be done on a different day, but so long as it could be taken care of by the time the Wisconsin State Fair starts on July 31, I’m cool.

Here follows a transcript of my conversation with the dentist’s office:

Receptionist: “Dr. Silverman’s office.”
Me: “Hi. My name is Heather, and I have an appointment on Monday for an exam and cleaning. But I just had a filling fall out, and I’d like to go ahead and schedule another appointment to have that replaced.”
Receptionist: “I’m sorry, who are you?”
[Small warning light starts flashing in my brain]
Me: “My name is Heather and I have an appointment Monday at 8:45.”
Receptionist: “And what do you want to do?”
Me: “I had a filling fall out. I need to schedule another appointment to get it replaced.”
Receptionist: “Well, I’ll ask him if he can fit it in on Monday but he’s all booked that day.”
Me: “I understand that. Can you see what his schedule is for the rest of that week?”
Receptionist: “He’s all full. I mean, I’ll ask him if he can do it when he comes in on Monday.”

And so on until I realized I should have just opened the phone call with “When is Dr. Silverman’s next available appointment?” without any of the backstory. The more information you give people, the more likely the confusion.

I’m not rude. I’m concise. And isn't the customer always right?

Here's hoping for a bionic tooth that can broadcast radio waves and stuff.

* Why? Stay tuned!

1 Fish in a Sea of Diet Coke:

Oh no! It's bad enough that your filling fell out, now your dentist is fully booked. Was there no way to get in for this emergency? Getting new fillings means installing a temporary one, then getting a permanent one weeks later. I hope your dentist was able to squeeze you to his tight schedule, and that your affected tooth is okay now.

Sharon Warner @ Premier Dental Esthetics