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another disappointing appointment



Junior member
Mar 15, 2008
Well, this is my 2nd post. My first post was in regards to a molar extraction I was going to have and I was scared to death.

Well, my appointment was yesterday so it's finally over! I love the feeling of "over" "all done" no more anticipation.

Why am I not happy then? Why am I so distressed? I'll tell you why. From the beginning of this ordeal I have told every nurse and dentist about my fears. Nobody was clueless to my anxiety. I went to my appointment yesterday at 9:30 am. The worst anxiety attack I had was in the waiting room. Once I got into the chair, I was fine. I don't understand except that maybe I was finally getting it done? Well, I had my list of questions ready and I started to ask nurse #1 about being put to sleep. She was busy getting all the equipment ready and spurted out "the doctor will be able to answer your questions" very coldly. OK, so she's having a bad day. Let's hope SHE'S not helping the dentist on my teeth.

Oh good, the dentist is here. He's really old. Hmmmm.... that makes me worry. Is he burnt out and going to be cold as well? Is he too old to be very careful and gentle? I start to panic again. He introduces himself and I say it's nice to meet him. I tell him I have many questions and I'm nervous. He doesn't acknowledge what I've said and starts to ask ME questions. He sounds as if he's in a hurry or it's a Monday (but it's Thursday). Nurses are coming in and out puting things on my arms and taking my blood pressure. The dentist tilts my chair back and asks me to open my mouth. I tell him I'm not ready yet and I have questions. He says he just wants me to point at the tooth that needs to be pulled and he asks why it's being pulled. (isn't this in my files?)

He gives me a form to read and sign and leaves and says he'll be right back to answer my questions. The form says that with extractions things could happen such as:

jaw bone damage requiring more surgery and the jaw being sewn shut.
aggravating adjacent teeth & loosening or accidental removal of fillings in teeth near the extracted tooth.
Nerve damage to the face, lips, tongue & taste buds that could be permanant.

etc. etc. etc.

Great, now I feel worse and start to have another panic attack.
But thanks to this "wonderful staff" and their terrific "bedside manner" i feel totally comfortable and safe. NOT

Doctor XXX comes back. I immediately start in with my questions. I will not be ignored again. I explain my past problems with finding veins and waking up during the procedure. I have a low pain tolerance. I don't take to novocaine well, it doesn't work well on my lower teeth and I need a different type of pain killer. Will I feel pain if I am asleep? How will keep my extraction clean afterwords? How do I avoid dry socket.

He quickly and robotically answers my questions. Puts the needle in my arm and tells me to bite on something and the next thing I remember is being put in a wheelchair. Thank God it's over.

Another nurse or assistant asks if I want apple juice or grape juice. I say apple juice. She brings it back with a cup and says to drink it. She bolts away and i ask her "how did everything go?" she didn't hear me. She didn't even ask how I was feeling. Gee, I think I've disturbed these people and in some way disrupted their day. Should I apologize? I feel like I should apologize.

2 minutes later she peaks around the corner and looks at my juice bottle.
"good, you're drinking it" and she disappears quickly before I can say anything.

I stand up and try to walk around. I don't know what to do now, am I supposed to just go home now? Is the dentist going to come talk to me? Do I get anything for the pain? The novocaine is starting to wear off and I am starting to feel discomfort. Which way do I go?

Another nurse comes around the corner and sees me trying to escape. "oh, you need to sit down. Where is your ride? Let's get you in a chair" and she takes me to another room. I ask HER about my procedure and she says she doesn't have my chart but she'll go over it when my ride gets there.
Then she disappears.

My ride shows up and another nurse is with him. I finally get to ask her questions about my procedure. It went well, it was easy, the tooth came out in one piece and the healing should be quick and I only get tylenol codeine 3 for the pain. She gives me a prescription and a pamphlet of what to do / not to do etc. She is also very robotic and Kurt with her responses. I just want to get out of this place. I feel like I'm in a prison and I did something wrong or told a bad joke and now all these people hate me.

OK, so they won't call in the prescription either. I have to take it to my pharmacy and wait and wait and wait for it. I even told the pharmacist I am in alot of pain (by now the novocaine has worn off and i have torn open a bottle of Tylenol from the Walgreens shelf and opened a bottle of apple juice and take 4 pills while I wait.) 5 people filling prescriptions. I am the only there waiting. I am in pain. DOes anyone care???? NO! I swear they did it on purpose.

So my Dentist XXX gave me a non refillable RX for 10 codeine tylenol pills. 10. Just 10. It says take 1-2 pills every 3-4 hours. I tried 1 pill. It did nothing for the pain. So I took another pill 1 hour later. THat helped a little. The pills wore off after 2 hours so I was taking 2 pills every 3 hours, just like the bottle said. I woke up twice in the middle of the night with pain and took 1 more pill. By the next morning (this morning) I have taken my last 2 pills. I call the dentist office (St. Paul Oral Surgery in MN) and ask for a refill. The receptionist says "you're done with your pills already?"
I try to tell her "well the bottle says..." but she interupts
"once moment" she says. Puts me on hold.
"ok I'm back. Let me take a note for the dentist..." she says in a strange voice.
"the bottle says" I try to tell her again that I am not taking too many.
She interupts "I'll have the doctor give you a call back since I am not authorized to ok your refill"
"but the bottle says..." I try again.
"ok ma'am? He'll call you right back" she interupts me.
"the bottle says to take" I try again.
"have a nice day" she interupts me again.
"but ma'am, miss, excuse me?????" I am mad now.
"bye bye" she says and hangs up on me!!!!!

Then, 5 minutes later another lobotomized nurse calls me back and says
"the dentist is willing to refill your RX just one more time but that's it. He thinks you went through that first RX too fast".

"we'll call in the rx at your pharmacy so you can pick it up today but if you need more after this, we need to see you in our office first. Have a nice day" click. Hangs up on me.

what's going on here? I am not a child. I am not addicted to TYLENOL CODEINE puleez! Give me a break. Why are these people in this type of business if they are going to be rude, mean, heartless and careless?
This is why I hate dentists. This is why I am horrified going to the dentist. I am sick to my stomach over the lack of care and friendliness I received at this place and there is nothing I can do about it.
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Moved into a more appropriate area. Since there aren't any actual questions in it...

FWIW I'm sorry you managed to get such a disappointment of a dentist, was this one recommended to you?
Thank you for moving it. I really didnt' know where to put it. I hesitated, at first, posting it at all. I didn't want to freak anyone out. However, I think it is good to also post our bad experiences so we can relate to others. I feel like I am the only one who has recently had another bad experience. I would like to know I am not alone. :)
This was an oral surgeon. It's where my dentist said I should go. I just haven't had a good dental experience in a long time. I am not high maintenance but I would like a nice staff who is sympathetic and friendly at least.
I have heard that some doctors and dentists in some states are having to go back to school to take some acting classes so they can at least pretend to care and show concern. Has anyone else heard this? How sad. I would never send my child to a daycare where the teachers were mean, cruel and even just a tad crabby. I would never eat in a restaraunt where the kitchen was a mess and the cook didn't wash his hands. Why are these people in this industry? I hope to someday find a nice caring facility that will accept my insurance. I hope to encounter friendly staff who actually like thier job and care about people in general.


I'd be switching dentists.
You have the right to have all your questions answered
You have the right to appropriate pain meds (tylenol 3 w/ codiene does NOTHING for me - percocet gets me stoned and I feel like crud. 800mg of ibuprofen is a wonderful alternative to each - it keeps swelling down, it attacks the he## out of the pain, and if you are EXTREMELY careful to ensure you have a full tummy taking it, at worst you'd need it only 2-3 days....)

I kinda understand the nurse/receptionist on the phone not wanting to/able to discuss the meds - but she should have put the doctor/ NP/ ANYONE that had authorization to discuss your script with you on the phone.. period. *and* explained, in a more professional/compassionate manner that she's either swamped with calls & hasn't forgotten you exist on the line & that she's trying to get your questions answered = that is just plain common courtesy regardless (in my opinion) where you call

I am happy for you that the procedure itself was pain-free and you were out cold for it..
The rest of it tho, I'm so sorry



edit to add === I didn't realize this was a surgeon to whom you were referred..
I had the same type of thing happen with a surgical extraction when I was about 14 or so = a primary molar wouldn't let go, the permanent one underneath wasn't "fully formed" or some such - it was basically just a lump of bone, not a tooth, with another piece of tooth next to it = was really wierd. My wisdom tooth was erupting at the time, and moved to fill in the gap[... but that's off-topic.. My surgeon for this procedure sounds like yours.. gruff and grumpy... I'm sorry again...
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Thats not very nice, I find for good pain control with my patients who have had major surgery Paracetamol,60mg codeine and 400mg ibuprofen or 50-100mg Diclofenac provides a very good barrier to pain provided they are taken regularly.
Obv The Ibuprofen and Diclofenac should only be taken for a shortish period of time unless you can get something like Lansoprazole prescribed to protect your tummy,and always with food but in the short term until your problem is sorted out it should be effective.
Hope you feel better soon.
You hit the nail on the head...this was all about chairside manner or rather lack of it...coupled with poor to non-existent listening skills from every member of staff........technically they didn't get much wrong in the sense that once you were sedated, the next thing you remember is waking up in a wheelchair. You did seem to be left alone a lot post-operatively though and imagine how different your account would have been if just half the staff you spoke to had been more patient-focussed.
I find it scary when you mention dental staff being sent on acting courses so they can pretend to care lol....if that's what it takes so be it....but it would come across as false as the best practitioners (maybe with a bit of training) are naturally empathetic and are behaving as they would wish to be treated themselves.

Thank goodness this was just an oral surgeon - they are clearly not looking for any repeat business from you or your friends - if you feel your General Dentist is just as bad then you need to change as others have said.....they are not all like this...I do wonder if you would have been dismissed quite so readily if a relative had accompanied you. I think you did amazingly well to be so assertive in that situation.....why not write a letter of complaint to them. Would they care.....probably not?

Would this not just be better in the Support Section..why two cents worth? Unless we are turning this into a thread to demonstrate how important the human element/chairside manner is.
I think a non-phobic would have found that treatment cold and callous...of course the other problem with coldness is that it raises the nervousness level in any patient nervous or not.

I am the most relaxed patient in the world with the right dentist ;D. Don't think yours would have done it for me that day either.:grouphug:
:sleepyjuice:(It's over) :grouphug:
Well thank you all for your sympathy and advice. I do plan to look for a new dentist. My current clinic is 2 miles from my home and connected to my doctors office as well. Finding a new dentist will take some work but if I start now, before I need anything done, I'll be prepared when I DO need work done.
Update: It's been 2 days since my molar extraction. I keep getting lentil soup in the cavity/extraction hole. I was told to only swish with salt water and not to bother the site. I called them because I don't want to get an infection or dry socket by having food sitting in this spot for a long time. They said to leave it there, it will eventually work it's way out. I asked about using a dental syringe thingy to squeeze water into it like my wisdom extractions and the receptionist said not to do anything. Does this sound right? I've been leaving it alone but I can't help but think that leaving food in there is bad.
If you can agitate out the bits of food with salt water then that would be quite a good idea. Squirting about with a syringe is probably a bit OTT I think.

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