Charlotte Smiled... ramblings of a dental hygienist that never sits still.
Charlotte Smiled... ramblings of a dental hygienist that never sits still.
I've been a dental hygienist for twenty years...with quite a few side gigs. All of those hustles came from a genuine curiosity about the world around me and a fascination with people and technology. #YOLO

A patient walks in the front door late...

A patient walks in the front door late...

1/14/2014 8:37:05 PM   |   Comments: 1   |   Views: 53506

In the not too distant past I encountered a situation that I'm pretty sure I won't ever forget.  It was a typical workday filled with lots of medical history updates, full mouth probes and deleting items from the treatment plans that had actually been completed three years ago just not updated in our system because the code or one surface was changed somewhere down the line.  You know what I'm talking about.

Thankfully there were no major hangups and although I was going to use up the entire hour available for my 3pm patient because her tartar had the tenacity of volcanic rock, things were just fine.  At 3:45, the receptionist popped in to let me know that my 4pm client was running a few minutes late.  "Great!", I thought.  "I'll be able to get a quick sip of water, stretch my back and wipe the sweat off of my upper lip."  

After wishing my current patient well and walking her to the front, I spent a fair amount of time spraying, wiping, re- staging and running the suction early so when 5pm came, I would be almost ready to go home.  In fact, at 4:10 I thought I'd better check the waiting room for "Mr. A" since I didn't hear the front door yet.

As I walked past the front desk sign in sheet, I noticed no one new had come in and sure enough, there weren't any bodies out in the waiting room.  Reception assured me he said "Just a few minutes".  At 4:20, I grabbed my chart to look up his cell number just as the front door opens.  

There is Mr. A with a sandwich in his hand.  This is how the conversations went:

Me:  Hey, there you are.  I was starting to worry.

A:    Yeah, it's been a crazy day.  I got stuck in a meeting and my secretary didn't remind me. (takes a bite of sandwich)  I called to say I'd be late.

Me:  Okay.... well, let me have you brush really quick and I'll meet you in this room. 
I hand him a toothbrush from the cabinet

A:    But you're going to clean them right?
Me:  Well, it helps quite a bit if the you get the food out first. (nervous laugh)
A:    I'm here for a cleaning.


What would you have said or done?
click here for the conclusion

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