A visit to the dentist

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 15 December, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 15 December, 2009, 12:00am


Can you think of any of your friends or anyone in your family who actually enjoys going to the dentist? If you feel ill or scared at the very thought of a visit to the dentist, you suffer from dentophobia. Let's be brave and have a look at what goes on at the dentist's.

Jack may say these ...

Jack West is a dentist in a busy practice in the suburbs of Manchester. Which five of the following sentences might he say to his patients as they sit in the chair?

1 You need a small filling in this front one.

2 Open wide, please!

3 Come back in an hour and the puncture will be repaired.

4 Tell me if it hurts.

5 It's a bad sprain. You'll need to wear a special bandage for at least a month.

6 I'm just going to polish the front ones.

7 You are allergic to dairy products.

8 You need to clean the back ones more thoroughly.

Good advice

Jack has decided to write a pamphlet that will help his patients who suffer from dentophobia. Complete these short extracts from Jack's 'The Dentist is Your Friend' pamphlet. Use your dictionary to check out any key words you don't know.

1 If you have a (pleasure / dread) of visiting the dentist, here are a few (tips / goals) that might help you conquer your fear.

2 If you visit your dentist on a regular (basis / reception), this will ensure problems are treated before they become (major / simple).

3 Taking deep (breaths / movements) as soon as you sit down in the dentist's chair will help you (relax /escape).

4 Music is a great (relaxant / nurse). If you want your dentist to play music as you are (judged / treated), all you have to do is ask.

5 If you are genuinely (tired / terrified) of visiting the dentist, speak to the receptionist and arrangements can be made for you to see a (therapist / surgeon).

6 A good way of (facing / ignoring) your fear is to tell your dentist how you feel. Don't be (ashamed / proud) to do this little thing.

7 Some dentists can use (hypnosis / acting) to put the patient at ease.

now do this

Questions and Answers

Jack is talking to Carol, his dental nurse.

Can you match up his questions with Carol's answers?

When you've done this, practise the dialogues with a friend.

1 Does Mrs Lee have another appointment?

2 Can you get me Mark Ho's records on the screen for me, please?

3 When did Mr Peter have his front crown fitted?

4 Can you pass me some whitening paste, please?

5 Why did Mrs Tan cancel her appointment?

6 How much mint mouthwash do we have?

a. She didn't give a reason.

b. Just a couple of bottles. I'll order some more.

c. No. We'll need to make one for her next week.

d. Just a moment. It was done four years ago. In April.

e. Let me just check his date of birth. Is it the first of May, 1980?

f. Do you need the thick or the thin?

And finally ...

Write a short account of your last visit to the dentist. When was it? Who went with you? What were your feelings? Was it a routine check-up? What treatment did you have? What did you do to calm yourself down?