This time last year my fancy West County dentist sold his practice to a dentist not three miles from my house. Convenient! Lovely!
I walked in and almost walked out. The reception area wasn't just shabby - it was mangy. Mangy in that every wall had a dead animal hanging on it. Dead deer head, dead fish, dead deer, dead fish, then a dead fish on the way to the exam room. (No dead deer in the exam room itself.) I went to the bathroom to check for dead fish and found very old linoleum and hair in the corner.
After I came back home and expressed my dissatisfaction to Gary, he insisted I make an appointment with his dentist. Gary's dentist is a perfectionist whom Gary loves.
I now see why Gary likes this dentist. He has the cool toys.
Lobby video flat screen: there is a flat screen in the (hairless) lobby that plays testimonials for the Invisalign brances on a loop. I love a before-and-after, but these people had perfect teeth before and slightly more perfect teeth after. They should have hit Gary up to be a tooth model instead: his Invisalign really made a difference.
Stand up panoramic 3-D CAT scan: You just stand there in a lead apron and some machine pivots around you and takes a very disturbing photo of your teeth that looks like those 3-D baby ultrasounds. This is used later to show you why you need the Invisalign treatment, which must be the bread-and-butter that buys the office all this cool stuff.
Comm Devices: The hygenists all wear a tiny communications device so they can converse about status and where things are. Mine reported that another client had been very concerned because he could hear the voices, couldn't see the tiny device, and didn't know where the voices were coming from.
After I got my water cleaning and Creamsicle tooth polish they - of course - tried to sell me on Invisalign, and I was impressed enough to look at an estimate, which was three times what Gary paid for his. Nope. I also had a cavity, one missing filling, and then later that day the back of one of my teeth sheared off, so I had to come back the next day. That means I got to appreciate the tooth filllng technology:
Mylar: l've never had a dentist wrap plastic around the base of my teeth and permanently leave it there. I don't know why he did, and it agitated me when I could feel it with my tongue after the novacaine wore off. It's been a month and I don't notice it anymore. I did look it up and he didn't just forget it, it's supposed to stay. Can't figure out fro the scholarly article what the point is.
I have left the best for last.
Jaw prop: They said, "Open wide" and then stuck a piece of plastic between my molars that KEPT me open wide. Genius. Genius.
THIS is what sold me (and made me consider even getting the Inivisalign when it's half off).