I Had To Talk Back!!!


English: GUANTANAMO BAY, Cuba – Navy Cmdr. Geo...

Back in the early spring, I walked down this same road, and now today, it has come to take me back down the familiar path. I had to take Al to the dentist. It is not a pleasant trip at all. He is fearful, as most dental patients are, and when he is afraid, the tremors quadruple in numbers. It is like watching several hummingbirds go from feeder to feeder.

As the last time I took him to a dentist, I could tell, even though the dentist did not come out and say it so plainly, that he was afraid to work on Al’s mouth. The tremors, the tears and the attitude just aren’t very appealing to strangers.

This time I took him to a brand new dentist. A place highly advertised with the most gentle of care and a friendly atmosphere. We did not have to wait long for an appointment, only three days, and it was fairly close to home. Al had told me that last evening it took him three hours to go to sleep from the pain.

I am surprised that he feels pain in any area, with the amounts of pain pills he is on, but this is what he said. He also asked me if this was September or November, and he said today was the 13, instead of the 25th. It is alright, he snapped out of that partially and did tell me today was Thursday. I blame some of this on his medications and the rest I always dump on the disease, Parkinson’s.

We get called back to the x-rays within  15 minutes, and Al does very well with these, because he has had them before. Then we are led back to the dental chair. When I see it for myself, I call it the big monster, that is going to hurt me! I am the biggest baby on earth when it comes to a dentist.

As soon as they get him situated in his chair, the technician leaves and they leave us in the room about twenty minutes. Now this is just enough time for Al to start going frantic, and he did. I had purposely asked when calling and making the appointment, to have an experienced dentist for Al’s type and to not let him sit, that he needed to be taken care of immediately, as the longer he sat, the worse he got.

No one paid attention to my request, so by the time the technician had come back and she and the dentist, (which, by the way, looked the age of 21, like a brand new dentist) looked over Al’s x-rays, Al was a big old mess. Tears galore, shaking tremors, lack of comprehending, you name it,  he had it going on.

It did not matter how I tried to soothe him, his memories were pain and needles. The dentist rambled off all the things that could possibly need to be done, and just from her talking, I could see dollar signs spinning quickly in my head. I think my eye balls were like spinning tops.

I gently explained Al and his conditions for the second time and also that he was in his fifth stage of PD, and that Medicare does not cover any dental work, so for a lot of reasons, we needed what had to be done, the easiest, and moderately pricing included. She looked at me and smiled.

This tiny young-looking girl, with no pimples or scarring on her face, and her leather knee rise boots on a sunny warm 78 degree day and her short little dress, looks at me and says, his teeth are dirty. He has two teeth that need to have root canals done plus caps.

I looked at her and smiled my dirty white teeth at her and said, I just told you he does not have insurance and his PD stage, so there is no way we can afford the couple of thousands of dollars you are talking about.

She flipped her pretty dark hair over her shoulder and smiled back at me and said, well you can just have his two teeth pulled, and he will have to figure out how to eat. You had his other side of his top two teeth pulled and he managed to find a way to eat, so he will have to do it this time also! smile, smile!

I asked her how was he to eat if he didn’t have the proper chewing teeth on either side, and she said,he’ll figure it out! She said that they had an oral surgeon that would take them out and he comes there once a month at the beginning of each month.

I calculated in my head how far it was to the first week of the new month, and the fact that the dentist was prescribing him some penicillin, and also remembered the fact that they advertised the best deals in town, plus the biggie was, they had programs for the poor, that allowed big discounts.

I told her alright, let’s find out what you can do for him. We left him sitting in his chair and walked over to the principal’s office, actually the manager’s office where they give you great deals on work needing to be done.

My goal was to get the penicillin started in Al right away, and then get those two teeth removed at a price he could afford. We sit and talk and the soonest they could get him in was November 19th. What happened to the first week of the month? Oh well, it fills up quickly. The price was over $1100.00 for two teeth for IV sedation. This dentist that saw Al said she did not have the experience to deal with Al, so she did not want to pull his teeth. Thanks so much, and I believe I requested a dentist with experience.

The price made me gulp, and there was no great deals, because the deals only come with general dentistry work, even if you are poor or disabled and have no money or not much. The time of the appointment was too far away. Who wants to suffer for almost another month?

I then asked them to call the oral surgeon and get the x-rays faxed to them and set up an appointment for him to have them pulled where I had taken him in the spring. At the previous dentist office, they did all the dirty work for me. They called the surgeon, faxed the x-rays, and set the appointment. Not here! The comment made to me when I asked for their help was, we don’t do this service if you feel you need to go somewhere else.

Now I was pissed off, and it is not good to get sister Terry pissed off. I have  a brother who is in his last stages of PD, and he is sitting in the opposite room crying and freaking out, and it is hard to get him to anywhere in this world, and you can’t do this for me? What? I told them they were down right rude, and I was going to make sure I told anyone who asked that this placed sucked donkey you know whats.

Their eyes popped out of their head. They obviously had not been treated this kind way of mine before, but I was not going to drag this brother of mine back to the car, take x-rays over to another dentist, drag him back into another dentist office, watch him freak out even more, just to set up an appointment. I stood up from my chair, and I told them, you ARE going to call this place and you will set a time, and I will take the damn x-rays myself, so go get them for me! She picked up the phone in silence and made the call. We are now scheduled for November 13th, for a little less than a thousand dollars.

She then went and got the x-rays and put them in an envelope, and I took them from her hand, and went over and helped my brother out of the monster seat, and we began to leave. As we passed by the manager’s office, she was still sitting there in shock at my treatment back to her, and I poked my head in and with my biggest dirty tooth smile, I said, You all have a nice day now, ya hear????

42 thoughts on “I Had To Talk Back!!!

    • thank you so much Darlene!!!!!! hopefully the penicillin will get rid of all infections and pains, and he will be alright until that date. it sure is strange that a lot of people hate going to the dentist or refuse, but when you need an appointment, it is months in advance you have to wait

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  1. Is it wrong that your post made me laugh? It sounds like those people did quite a bit of false advertising, and it’s awful that you and Al had to waste time, energy and gas. Especially when travelling is already difficult for both of you. Atleast you were able to get another (cheaper) appointment. Thank God for the new appointment and that things weren’t worse (or any snippier). <3<3<3
    Sent from my BlackBerry® device on the Simple Mobile network

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  2. Hopefully the Penicillin will reduce or clear up the infection completely and the pain will go with it. I have never had a toothache and hope I never do. Dentists are altogether too expensive. When you think of the time it takes to do the work and figure out how many patients they can see in an hour, their hourly rate is phenomenal. I’d like a quarter of what they make. I sometimes think that they want their first few patients to pay for their whole college education.

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    • i totally agree. the price they charge for a consult and all the x-rays is way out of a normal range!!! i am hoping also the penicillin will kill all infections and pain!! fingers are crossed

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  3. Terry, your story made me laugh so hard…..not to take away from anything bad that happened..but you started my morning with a chuckle…….I too hate the dentist and I just don’t go. So, far evrytime I have made the attempt I get a laundry list of $5000.00 worth of work…excuse me if I had that kind of money laying around I would prefer to take a vacation in Europe…..so I figure, no pa in, I can chew and eat, I use whiteners from the store …I am good to go….

    🙂

    ivonne

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  4. Terry, I like this new sister .. that goes up against authority. Just love it. You have to bring her along next time you go to any doctor with Al, we have all the right in the world to question their decisions if we are not pleased with them. So proud over you. His infection has to be gone before they can do anything with his teeth. Well done, Terry.

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    • thanks my dear friend. It did feel good to stand up to these professionals. they try so hard to get as much money out of you as they can, but they forget that we are humans also. I have to fight for Al’s rights sometimes, like I did today. I can get mad, for sure, if I believe that someone is trying to take advantage of me or a disabled person as my brother. Now you have seen the other side of me!!!!

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  5. Oh, does this sound familiar…I broke a tooth off last week…It had a metal filling in it…so the other part of the tooth was probably going to come off too…
    To “try” and keep what was left of this “bad” tooth…Root canal…capping…etc. …was going to run me $2,000.00…and then with all of the other things
    they wanted to do would be another $1,000 or $2,000…I have no insurance…so it looks as if I will have to make a quick decision!… I say NO to first plan…
    and go to the “Pulling” plan…now we are at $345.00…I check around before committing to Plan B…because I thought I could get it pulled cheaper…
    NO WAY!…They would have to have x-rays…and that had already been done at this dentist for free…”NEW PATIENT”…Well, they pulled it…
    and I have to admit…this young male dentist was so nice along with his staff…But, I sure had my say about the prices…and I didn’t HAVE to do what they wanted… I’m sure I will be remembered…mkg

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  6. Well done, Terry! I worked in a dentist’s office for a while and it never ceased to amaze me how the dentist’s time was always considered far more valuable than the patient’s who was being shaken down – errr, treated! xoM

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  7. Good for you! You definitely should of said that you were gonna call the disability rights people and report them as well and they really would have done whatever too! But way to go Terry! I am proud of you. Poor Al has been through so much and so have you. He is very very lucky to have you as his sister!

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    • yes i should have thought of that. i think i will keep it for future reference. thank u for the nice compliment, and if you were a fly on the wall, your wings would have been buzzing!! LOL

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  8. Way to go Terry! Doctor’s or Dentist’s don’t know what it is like to take of someone that is older than they are, but does not act like it. (no fault to the person needing care). I would turn the tables and ask them what they would do, it it was their loved one (mother, father, sibling or spouse). They need to hear the frustrations of the caretaker. Once you explained to them on the phone what you expected of them to provide, and they did not, I would have taken Al out of the office and maybe to an ER for the antibiotic or to his regular family doctor. Then rescheduled with the dentist you felt most comfortable with. It is so hard to comfort the one you love, when the medical/dental field don’t help or add to his stress. I would right a letter to the home office of that dental place and maybe a letter to the editor. Business hate bad press. Well, you can tell them you hate bad communication and businesses that lie.
    Oh, I could go on, but I won’t. Terry, I am proud that you stood up for Al and yourself. Good job! 🙂

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    • i think a lot of it still goes back to people are afraid of someone who is different, and not normal, but i can ask what is normal. maybe they are not normal to me as i am. i know i do not live with out compassion in life for others. i know that i can feel what others are thinking, so of course they are not my normal. i think i will write a letter to the corporate, they deserve to know. thank u for reading my adventure with Al and sharing with me your thoughts. hugs

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