Ten Reasons to Love Your Dentist
My first dentist was a sadist. At least that’s how the child in me remembers it. He was our neighbor, and family history says that he gave us a really good break on the price, so he got the job. All I remember is this: He wouldn’t use Novocain, telling me not to be a baby.
Not a great start to my feelings about dentists. Since then, though, I’ve changed my mind. Sure, it’s not a barrel of laughs sitting there with someone poking and stabbing at your teeth and gums, but seriously. Consider the alternative.
Later, as a pre-teen with a serious “Mission Impossible” fantasy, I tried pretending my dentist was installing a secret radio into my molar. That actually helped me stay calm and almost enjoy my time in the chair. Yeah, I know – geeky. But it worked for me at the time – and I saw that if I changed my thinking, my experience could change. (That, and the fact that we had found a better dentist.)
And so, ten reasons to love your dentist – and the members of their team who help keep your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy:
1. Dentists know how to fix your teeth. The obvious – yet we often don’t think about it until a filling falls out or a tooth aches. Think Tom Hanks in CastAway. Remember the scene where he had to pull out his own tooth, using the ice skate blade? Enough said. Go write a thank you note to your dentist for being there when you need him or her.
2. Dentistry has evolved – and so has your dentist. Treatments are better, care is more preventive, and there are new ways to treat certain conditions. Dental implants, teeth whitening, use of lasers and air abrasion for decay, digital x-ray imaging…this ain’t your grandmother’s dentist!
3. Dentistry is about prevention, not just repair. My kids has sealants put on their teeth and rarely ever had a cavity. My hygienist makes sure I"m doing what I should between visits. Every visit to my dentist includes information as to what I can do at home to maintain oral health. That’s why I use the rubber-tip thing for my gums. In the car during red lights. Hey, it works.
4. Your dental team knows your mouth. While you’re in for your check-up or repair, they are looking for signs of oral cancer, gum disease and other dental conditions. Don’t wait until you have a problem to go see them!