Tuesday, April 03, 2007

I'd rather have a root canal.

Here in Canada, we have free health care. Unfortunately, that does not include dental. I had to go to the dentist today, and now I am very cranky. And sore. And broke. I have go back again, and in May I get to see the oral surgeon. I think I might hate the dentist.
I paid $35 for an "exam". The dentist looked in my mouth. He even used a mirror thingy. He said "Hmmmm. Have you seen your regular doctor? Are you sure this isn't an ear infection?" I estimate his rate at 3.5 dollars per second.
I paid $65 for a "full circle" x-ray. That's where you stand still and the machine goes around your head. Guess what? The dentist DID NOT LOOK at this x-ray. It was "just in case it's needed".
I paid $35 for a small x-ray of the area that is actually hurting. I guess I probably paid for the small steel square that I got to mash into my gums during the x-ray, too. The dentist DID look at the small x-ray. He even showed it to me, so I could point out to him the shard of tooth that used to protrude out of my gums, but is now hidden by the swollen-ness. Is that a word? Who cares. The dentist was kind enough to tell me that I should really have had this tooth root with the pokey shard removed when the tooth itself was taken out. He asked "Where did you get this done?" and I said "Here. You did it."
The dentist pointed out another cavity in my mouth, and I asked what we should do about that. Thinking that he would, I dunno, DO something. He said "You'll have to get an examination first, to see what other decay is happening." Call me crazy, but I thought I WAS being examined. At the bargain price of $35. Turns out I have to return another day, pay a different type ($70) of fee, and get another exam. That way I can go yet a third time to get the actual work done.
Did I mention the oral surgeon? He will be here in May. I get to see him, too! He is going to put me to sleep, and cut a hole in my mouth, and remove the offending pokey thing. If he says he wants me to be examined first, I'll punch him.
As I was leaving, the dentist told me to please go see my doctor, to rule out any other ear/throat/lymph infections. I dropped into my doctor's office to make an appointment, but my doctor is in France until June. I love my doctor. I hope he's having a good time. I sure wish I was in France until June. The nurse told me to go to out-patients at the hospital, so off I went. Good thing I had no plans today other than sitting around at home, trying to shake the flu. I sat in the hospital for just over an hour, and then got to feel like a complete idiot when the doctor said "Ummm. I think it's probably your swollen, red, inflamed gums. Have you seen the dentist?" Nice doctor. She even smiled when I told her the story of my morning. I have no ear infection. No throat infection. Just like I told the damn dentist.
I hate the dentist. I really, really do.


OldHorsetailSnake said...

Isn't it nice to have free health care? If dentists became doctors, wouldn't have solve the problem?

irreverentmama said...

Dentists and dentistry mystifies me. (Urgh. Try typing that three times fast.)

I've had one dentist whose input I truly trusted, who seemed reliable and accurate. I'm quite sure the rest of them weren't charlatans.

And yet, and yet...

"That tooth looks bad. You need to deal with that soon, or it will give you a lot of trouble."

Two years later, it's still fine.

"That's a huge filling you have in there. The strain on the remaining tooth is huge. You'll need to get a crown on it, to keep it all together."

Do you know how much crowns COST? Fourteen years later, that tooth is still holding together just fine...

On and on and on it goes. It's gotten to the point where I go in for my annual appointments. If they see anything of immediate need, they may deal with it. As for the stuff that "will soon happen"?

Pfft. I just don't believe it any more.

gmanSet said...

Hey AM, don't forget to claim your dental expenses under your benefits plan as part of the YTA...and then claim the difference under Hubby's plan as his dependant. The insurance industry calls this "coordination of benefits". You must ensure you are taking advantage of your employment benefits, as you are paying monthly premiums for them...this should help ease some of the financial pain. As for the rest of your pain...send the Terrors off to Dental and Optometry School! Early retirement for you and Hubby!
Sorry to hear about your oral fixations otherwise...

Anonymous said...

Down with the dentist!!!! I'm with you I hate the dentist too!

Undercover Angel said...

I hate dentists too. I haven't been to one out of fear in years. I made an appointment the other day and it's going to cost me over $300 just for an examination and a cleaning...

Dreama said...

I hear that...dentists make me cringe and sometimes the scam you for more money. The optometrist did the same thing to me when I was still in YT...scavengers!

In NS I had insurance and only got billed if my plan didn't cover it, and that bill came in the mail. So I could always go for emerg things and not have to worry about payment right then and there.