Sumita had been complaining of tooth ache of late. It was one of the top right molars. Yet, she could not find the time to visit the dentist. The pain was becoming unbearable. There was none to look after her daughter, while she was out. Her neighbour suggested visiting Dr. Nitish Agarwal, retired doctor of KGMU Hospital,Lucknow. Sunidhi aunty had said, “ You need not wait much longer. Take your child with you, the doctor won’t mind.”
One day, it was unbearable to bear the pain any longer and so finding no one else to look after her child, she took her daughter with her. Dr. Agarwal was one of the reputed retired doctors in the area called River Side Colony in Lucknow . She made appointment with he doctor on Practo and reached the doctor’s chamber on the scheduled date.
Sunita stretched on the examination chair and the doctor gave a shot in her gums and waited for the anaesthesia to take effect locally. Sumita noticed that the doctor’s hands shook as he tried to grasp the various instruments to probe, extract and fill. He had some problem with his nerves. The doctor’s wife seemed very helpful as his assistant .
Sumita was undergoing a RCT or Root Canal Treatment, there were three more appointments to meet before placing the crown over the tooth in question.
On the second day, she visited the chamber alone, as Mukesh, her husband, was home. As the doctor asked his wife to hand over alcohol, Sumita felt uncomfortable. “Alcohol? Why not anaesthesia? Would it numb her delicate nerves?” The doctor had said the previous day that two more nerve roots had to be cleaned..
Pain twitched Sumita ,as the quivering fingers of the doctor cleaned the root canal . The pain made Sumita cry. But the hands of the doctor over her mouth prevented her from speaking aloud. She held out her hands to ask the doctor to stop. After a while she asked ,”Doctor I felt immense pain this time. I wanted anaesthesia to be applied locally. “. The doctor’s wife spoke. “You normally do not require anaesthesia the second time. Are you sure you don’t have alcohol regularly?”
“ I could not speak as you were probing the root of the tooth. I NEEDED ANAESTHESIA! “
The doctor turned away as his wife smiled,” No we have been practicing for so long you see. None required anaesthesia after the first sitting…”
Sumita had had a root canal treatment before. And her good senses warned her, something was amiss. She would never return to this chamber again, for sure! As her head felt weak, she sat outside in the waiting room. The hammering of the masons, her terrible experience made her numb. She knew she would be extracting her tooth this time rather than visiting another dentist. She knew she should march to a different drummer than listen to those who had advised this doctor for her needs.
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