Monday, September 28, 2009

Dental Gossip

Since I work in a small office everyday, and mainly only deal with clients in their environment I am unfamiliar with the unspoken rules for certain professions as far as Dr./Patient relations are concerned, but I would like to make a suggestion. If you are a dentist, or a dentist's assistant, do not talk to your clients. They A: can not respond and 2: have no interest in what you do in your spare time (especially if it is directly related to anything you do with your hands).

This is how my dentist visit went this morning, and this is why I feel so strongly about having professional unspoken rules. I first had a long conversation with myself about whether or not to wear shorts because although it is warm out I was positive that I did not want the Dentist to be checking me out in any way, shape or form. After realizing that the dentist would not be in because it is Monday (and Yom Kippur) I put on my shorts and got on the road.

When I got to the office I was greeted by the receptionist and quickly shuffled back to a room by the dental assistant. Right out of the gates I sit down, legs up, and she says, "wow what a tan you have" I should have worn the pants.

After sitting in silence, she finally reclined my chair and started the cleaning. Immediately the questions start coming, "What do you do for work?" "Did you travel this summer?" "Where did you go to college?" "Where are you from?" Now clearly my mouth is open, I am drooling, my lipgloss is being smeared all over my face, and there is no chance of me responding. Could these questions have been asked in the previous 10 minutes I sat there while she prepped....probably.

Finally the questions stopped so I could stop grunting "uuaaayyhhh" in an attempt to answer them. I'm not sure if she got the vibe, or if those were her standard questions she asks so she doesn't feel guilty and can get right on to talking about herself, but I was stoked she was finished. Or so I thought.

Because silence is not comforting for her she proceeded to let me in on how her weekend went, her likes and dislikes, favorite foods, you name it I found out about it. She and her girlfriends went out on Saturday to a restaurant that was packed. After waiting for a table they noticed a friend of a friend at the bar (apparently he is British, really old and unattractive) and because they were desperate for a seat they sent him a wave and cruised over. He was sitting with his friends (more unattractive and even older) and they quickly offered her and her extremely hot friends a seat. One of the men, who was like a Soprano (Italian, old, fat, perverted and loud) proceeded to tell her a story about how he was dating this chick and they just went to a swingers party last weekend and then he got into detail about what they did, etc. etc. As she is telling this to me she says, "I was thinking to myself, why is he telling me this?" which is so funny because as she was saying that to me I was thinking the exact same thing. When someone tells you something that you don't want to hear in the first place, I'm pretty sure that none of your friends are going to want to hear that same story from you at another time, let alone one of your patients. She also let me know that the Soprano paid for her dinner ($130) and again for a bottle of wine they had ($140) and that her boyfriend is super cheap. To top it all off she started singing along with the radio periodically. Reminder: this is my appointment that I am paying for not America's Got Talent.

TMI assistant! I don't want to know about how hot your friends are, or about the cougar adventures you take on your time off. I want to have my teeth cleaned, get some free travel toothpaste and get the hell out of there.

Moral of the story, if you are a dentist or a dental assistant, remember that your patients are in your office to get their teeth cleaned. If they wanted advise on life they'd see a therapist and if they wanted to gossip they'd probably hang out with their friends.