I don't normally share anything like this, but feel this story is so important and very personal to me. People work in dentistry for various reasons but I hope that for all of them it has something to do with helping people improve their smile and to care for their oral health. Unfortunately, for some it will be money; for some it will be power; and some will try to fulfill their parent's wish of becoming a dentist.
I am not a dentist, but 10 years in dentistry sometimes makes me think - why am I still in this industry? What is keeping me here?
I have worked as a Treatment Coordinator for over 3 years at my current place of work and have seen many patients. Some of them have gone through life changing treatments over the last few years. Over time, I got to know them quite well - with some I became very close. I saw them on a regular basis and I was truly interested in the progress they were making and the experience they were having. With some, I have cried and laughed, with a real feeling that there was some kind of bond.
One of them saw me recently in reception when I was leaving work. He asked me to wait whilst he booked his next appointment, and then he took me to one side and told me something very special that reminded me why I love dentistry, why it feels like 10 years is just the beginning, and why I love my job!
He spent about 20 minutes telling me about his treatment how great our dentist and hygienist had been to him. His smile had truly transformed. I never saw him smiling before, let alone as he did in that moment. When I first met him during his initial consultation, he was so nervous, with needle phobia and previous trauma, I never thought he would ever start the treatment, let alone get to the end. He is nearly there now, but what he said next, really hit me for some reason. You - dentists, must hear it a lot!
He said, "Thank you for being part of my journey - if not for you, I would have not done it. You had a massive impact on me, you made me comfortable and my trust in the practice started in the consultation room".
The treatment coordinator's job can give a lot of personal satisfaction, and moments like this make you smile for a long time. Maybe I am softie, but I really had to fight my emotions to keep my professionalism - I so wanted to give the guy a hug!
In the modern world, we rarely stop to "smell the roses" - sometimes, it is worth stopping for a second to appreciate a conversation like this, it didn't cost him anything to say what he said, but it meant so much to me.
What is your SUPER POWER?