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The Dentist

Posted on: 6.23.2010

Every six months I receive a postcard in the mail from my dentist and I become full of dread. In fact, I ignored my last postcard on purpose -- it’s a fabulous stalling technique I’ve learned since I started maintaining my own schedule. However, my mom, being the productive and helpful person she is, scheduled an appointment for me.

It’s not that I hate the actual dentist. He’s quite nice. So are his dental hygienists, I guess the feeling of dislike stems from the feeling of failure I have after I leave the dentist chair. It’s always the same: “You have beautiful teeth Natalie!” They then ask about my dental routine, and I reply {quite proudly} that I typically brush my teeth at least three times a day. To which, they retaliate with: “Good! But,. . . ." and that’s where the guilt trip begins. “Let’s take a look at your X-rays. See this part here? {Pointing to the bone holding my teeth in place.} This bone will begin to deteriorate with inflammation of the gums, and inflammation of the gums is caused by . . . {you guessed it} . . . not flossing.”

In a dentist’s mind, not flossing equals inflammation of the gums, which causes bone loss, which causes tooth loss, which causes loss of self-esteem, which causes depression, which leads to suicide.

So I leave the dentist feeling like an epic failure at preventing this downward spiral ultimately resulting in my death . . . and that is why I dread going to the dentist.


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