Thursday, March 4, 2010

Dental school is ridiculous.

Ryan is an incredibly hard worker. He also has the worst luck ever when it comes to the patients that are assigned to him by the dental school.

I know all dental students struggle with patients who miss appointments and cancel with 5 minutes notice...that's just the nature of dental school...but I swear that Ryan has the worst luck of any of them. (I'm sure the other "dental wives" feel the exact same way.)

Every night, several patients call Ryan to cancel. It is ridiculous. So then, he spends hours going through his lists, calling other patients to beg them to come in at the last minute. It breaks my heart to see him so frustrated when he himself is working so hard. He is supposed to see a certain number of people and get a certain number of points and do certain types of procedures--but he can't do that when everyone keeps canceling on him.

They have a policy at the school that if patients "disappoint" twice, they are no longer welcome to be patrons of the dental school. In the last few weeks, Ryan has had to have six people removed from the UB patient pool...that is how often people bail out on poor Ry.

To make matters worse, the school is not at all sympathetic or flexible with these situations. Their attitude is, "Figure it out! You still have to meet all of your requirements by a certain date." Ummm, how can Ryan do that when his patients don't show up?

One small example of the drama that Ryan has had to endure: Ry must do one more root canal by the end of the semester, or he will not pass 3rd year clinic requirements. Well, his first patient got the prep done for a root canal--but then she never bothered coming back for the actual filling. So Ryan is worrying about this woman who is wandering around town with a gaping hole in her tooth, just waiting to get infected. Did she go to someone else to get it filled? Does she still plan on him doing it? He doesn't know because her phone is now disconnected, and she isn't responding to the postcards the dental school has sent.

When it was clear that this woman was not coming back, the dental school assigned Ryan another root canal patient. She was an older lady, and she came in last week to get the prep. Tomorrow, she was supposed to get the filling. Well, this afternoon, Ryan called to remind her about her appointment, and her husband told him that she died today. Can you believe it?!? Isn't that just the saddest and craziest thing?

I am so glad that I am not the one in dental school. I would've dropped out by now.


  1. oh my goodness! Josh has had quite the luck with his patients and is worried about his CPU's too, but he hasn't had anyone die on him, yet! How sad!

  2. Wow, I don't even know what to say. That's so sad, and ridiculous all at the same time. I'm not sure I could handle that many cancellations. I'd probably take it personally.

  3. Oh man! I feel for Ryan. Partly because I have a hubby who is also stressed out with everything patient related these days. He is struggling to get the 600 CPUs to pass for the semester. Thayne had a root canal patient that had everything go wrong and they finally had to pull the tooth on the 4th appointment and so he got 0 points on his root canal after 4 appointments! Now he has to find another root canal patient. Poor boys. I'm sure Ryan's super stressed. That's so hard. Thayne has trouble sleeping at nights sometimes because he gets so worried about all of this. I also know it's hard on you to see him working so hard and have things out of his control. Good luck and if you ever need to vent about the system, I'm here for you.

  4. She DIED?!?! Oh my gosh. That is not what I was expecting!!! That is ridiculous! Poor Ry.

  5. There are some dental schools that line up all the patients for the students, I heard. It may be a rumor but it sure does sound nice.

    Brent is always going on and on about his patients too. All last year it was, "I need more patients!" and now all I hear out of him is, "I have too many patients!" Either way he is stressed.

    We can't wait for an office manager and staff.

  6. WOW! I think this is a dental school issue. I think it is their responsibility to line stuff like this up. That's how the med schools do it. You'd think that for how much you are paying them they would put in a little effort to ensure that their students are actually doing well and getting the training that they need!

  7. Fly me up I will let him do what ever he wants to me if I get to see New York, maybe even a root canal;)

  8. Back in Provo, I about died and went to heaven when I found the dental tech school-- free cleanings! I love having clean teeth!! I guess that makes me the only person in the world excited to go to the dentist's.
    I can understand not wanting to go, but for heaven's sake, it's free! You have to do it anyway (or just sit and rot), so why not just go?
    I guess death is a good excuse, though.

  9. WOW.
    your descriptions are getting me SO very stoked for next year! ha ha ha!
    in all seriousness. . .
    sorry poor Ryan!
    it sounds as if your circumstances are a bit extreme!
    dang people!
    they should know that Ryan would be a great guy to do their dental work. . . they should be lining up to see him! ;)
    good LUCK in the future guys and you are in our prayers! :)

  10. Tell him to call me if he needs to fill any more cavities. I have plenty...and Creed has to many patients.

  11. OH MY GOSH!!!!!!! She DIED?!?!?! Of all the things to happen! Oh, my, goodness! If I were in NY, I would TOTALLY go to Ryan for an appointment. I really need to go to the dentist...I might have a few cavities.

    I hope things go better for him! That is just nuts.

  12. for next year tell ry, that i have a cavity that needs filling that he might need for the boards. i almost did it last year for a girl, but the cavity needed a little more maturing.


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