I have a cavity.
At least that’s what my “dentist” says. At this point, though, I’ve got questions about his diagnosis and his entire line of work.
Let’s start with a little background.
I first went to this dentist in May. Prior to that, I had not had my teeth professionally cleaned or checked in at least a decade. That is not to say I didn’t take care of my teeth. I brushed between 3 and 4 times a day. I avoided sugary snacks. I just didn’t go to the dentist. At first it was because I had no insurance, then it was because I didn’t have the time or energy to find a dentist. Eventually, I just gave up on it. But, six months ago, I sucked it up, went online, and found a Dentist.
I expected the worst. But, after an hour with the hygeniest cleaning my teeth (She looked like she had gone 9 rounds with Tyson by the end,) the dentist came in and told me everything looked good. “Just floss more”
“Well,” I thought, “That wasn’t so bad. I will have another checkup in 6 months and, armed with my new directive to floss more, I will be in even better shape then.”
Fast forward to Monday. The hygienist does her business. It was not nearly as bad as last time, though there are still some painful moments. But, instead of taking an hour, it takes 30 minutes. When she’s done, I say, “Wow, there were some painful moments.” She responds, “Well, you’re not flossing enough.”
Next, the dentist comes in to look at my X-rays. He spots a cavity. “It’s small, but we might as well fill it before it becomes a problem.”
And so, I make another appointment for next week and leave.
As the minutes pass and I am now alone with my thoughts, I start to think. This whole thing is a sham. How is it possible that I can go ten years without a teeth cleaning and get a clean bill of health, then return six months after being treatedby this guy and, all of a sudden, have a cavity? That a pretty wild coincidence.
And as far as the hygienist telling me I need to floss more, I’ve flossed pretty much every day since my last visit. I’ve missed, maybe 10 days of flossing in the past 6 months. HOW MUCH MORE DO YOU WANT FROM ME, LADY?
Now, I’m not saying there’s a three way conspiracy between floss-makers Johnson and Johnson, whatever company makes fillings and the American Dental Association, but I’m saying there isn’t one either.
It’s just something to think about.