Saturday, January 20
A Date with Dentistry.
Last week I went to the dentist for the first time in 2 years. Thankfully my teeth haven't dropped out, but its the first time Ive managed to find one who had any space. Id got into this habit of every few months phoning all the dentists within a 50 mile radius and asking "Are you taking any new NHS patients?"...." No" and the same a few months later, and a few more months etc etc etc. Anyway you can imagine my shock when I did this before Christmas and someone said Yes! I was so surprised I just made appointments straight away and didn't even think about access issues because these are dentists, shouldn't access be guaranteed? So the morning of the appointment I suddenly thought about it and called them? Did they have wheelchair access and so on? The receptionist sounded pretty surprised I should ask this, well she said we have a small step at the front door, but the dentists room is downstairs. So I thought ok not so bad we can manage.
When we got there I saw the step and straight way realised I wouldn't be able to get up it myself, and once inside the waiting room was so crammed it was impossible. The final straw came when the downstairs surgery actually had one very large step to negotiate. Its times like these that I save Plan B for. Plan B requires me to stand up and actually try to take a step or 2 at the same time. Not easy, I can just about stand up if my life depends on it, and as for taking steps, its not so much as I'm walking but more like dragging myself along if you get my drift and it actually causes me a lot of pain after the event. I can take a step with my right leg and then end up dragging my left up to meet it, in a sort of Quasimodo style. Very Stylish I might add! So with my husband standing right behind me I managed the step. There was just no way I was letting this dentist get away now Id found them, Id have shuffled in on my bottom if needs be.
But at the end of that day I'm just irritated by the fact that I wasn't given the right information at the time, and why on earth are dentists so bloody inaccessible? Are they not governed by the same planning constraints as everyone else? I have another couple of visits in the next month which should be fun, obviously my 'carer' will have to come with me, and I'm sure he has better things he could be doing, but in the long term I'm going to have to look for a dentist with better access if there is one.