All I Want For Christmas...
Is my two front teeth?
I know the holidays are over. But 7 days before Christmas I broke the crown on my tooth, and after all the trouble I've had with my teeth in the past, all I truly wanted was my tooth fixed.
It all started about 6 or 7 years ago. One Saturday I woke up and ate some cereal. I'm quite positive it was Raisin Bran. Suddenly I felt a pain in my jaw - An excruciating pain that was actually causing me to black out for a few seconds each time the wave hit.
I called my dentist's emergency number and left a message. An hour later I called it again and left a second message. An hour after that I called a different dental emergency number and they hooked me up with another mouth professional right away.
This dentist was fabulous. His equipment was brand new, state-of-the-art digital equipment. X-rays were more precise, showed more detail, and were less harmful to me.
The x-rays showed some damage to the root of one of my molars. Digital Dentist's opinion? Root canal.
A few days later I gave the digital x-rays to my regular dentist (let's call him Dr. Jackass). His opinion? There's no such thing as digital x-ray equipment, and these x-rays showed nothing wrong with my tooth. We argued for a bit, until he decided to do his own x-rays, claiming that his Siemens equipment, although 10 years old, was the best in the world.
I asked if he was jealous of the other dentist, and set up a cage match for the following Sunday. Dentist vs. Dentist: no holds barred.
The outcome of the x-rays? There was nothing wrong with my tooth, but maybe a root canal would stop the "mysterious" pain.
He scheduled a root canal for me for the next week. When I went in for the operation, I was stunned to find that it was done in about 40 minutes. I happily paid cash, but asked the receptionist why the bill stated "Emergency Dental Procedure". I told her it was a regularly scheduled root canal. She informed me that Dr. Jackass doesn't do root canals, and that I still had to have one. I argued that I just had the operation done. To settle this discussion, Dr. Jackass entered and explained that he did not perform a root canal.
I asked why he lied to me, why he told me I was having a root canal done, when in fact, I wasn't. He pulled a Paul Martin, and avoided the question. He informed me that he went out of his way in order to relieve my pain during the "emergency dental procedure". For the first time, my voice rose. I angrily told him I was in no pain when I came in for, what I was told, was a root canal operation. I told him I did not book an "emergency dental procedure" and I was fully expecting a root canal to be performed.
That's right, Dr. Jackass, champion of the Dentist Wrestlers, laughed at me. He told me root canals cost upwards of $750, not the $250 I just paid for his 40 minutes of work. After a lengthy arguement, he decided he would give me back my money, but not before insulting me. He told me that he did not want to lose my business, and he would return my money, in good faith that I would return as a client. He said he was sorry that I misunderstood what the appointment was for.
It's true. I find the big dentist words confusing. It's quite easy to get "root canal" and "emergency dental procedure" mixed up. It must have been my fault. A recent study found that most Canadians can't distinguish between the words "root" and "emergency". I constantly find myself asking for Combo #3 with Emergency Beer to drink.
Aching to know what happened during my actual root canal? Read about that disaster tomorrow!