Maitre & Crabtree Dental Group / Ningyong Xu
I’m Ningyong, a 30+ asian woman. Today I went to Maitre and Crabtree dental group in Mobile, Alabama at 11am on Dec 23rd, 2010. Because last week after teeth clean, the dentist told me that I have 4 teeth cavities which need to be filled. So I scheduled to fill 2 cavities this morning. Crabtree is my dentist. I was introduced by a dental assistant. I told her I don’t want to numb my teeth because I have a sensitive tooth experience after filling a cavity before. The sensitive feeling lasted for about a year. So the dental assistant just gave me some numb gel to numb my gum but not tooth nerve. Then my dentist, Crabtree, went in the small room. He said there only about 8 to 10 people in the past 10 years in his practice experience refused to have a numb shot while filling cavity. But I still said I didn’t want to since I have a sensitive tooth experience after a filling cavity before. Then without explaining any detail about how to fill the cavity, he started to drill my tooth on the up left side. When I felt nerve pain, I moved. Then he stopped the drill and was angry on me. He said that’s why I need to numb my teeth because I moved once I felt pain. I used my tongue to feel there had already been drilled a hole in one of my up left tooth. I said last week staff working in the same dental clinic told me that my teeth would only be remove a thin layer surface and filled with cavity. I didn’t expect Crabtree would drill so deep. Crabtree said from the surface down to the tooth nerve is about 6mm distance. And he will drill and remove about 2-3mm of my tooth surface material. I was pretty shocked. It’s about 30-50% of the tooth surface, not just a thin layer. What people told me last week was totally not what my dentist Crabtree planed to do. But Crabtree himself didn’t explain to me how much he might drill before he starting. Until I asked Crabtree, he told me he will drill about 2-3mm deep. But it was too late, my tooth has already been drilled. Why couldn’t he tell me at the beginning and let me make the decision whether continue or not? If he told me at the beginning, I won’t let him drill my tooth because I never have any problem with this tooth. In addition, he said I might feel pain 10 years later when the cavity down to the nerve. But the white filling material can only last for 5-7 years. So to me it doesn’t make sense to remove half of my teeth 10 years earlier while the filling can only last 5-7 years long. Meanwhile, Crabtree also asked if I have been in dental school before. I told me I did not. Crabtree then said that he has 10 years experience and I did not need to tell him what to do while I was expressing my concern. Crabtree also said if I didn’t want to have the numb shot, he wouldn’t work on me anymore. I said “But you already opened my tooth.” But he did not respond to me and immediately left the small room. I could feel he was angry and not friendly very much. Is that too late Crabtree said he didn’t want to fix my tooth anymore. At the beginning I already told him I didn’t want to have numb shot. If he didn’t want to fill my cavity, he could stop at the beginning without drilling my tooth open. Now, he drilled my tooth open, and carelessly left me behind and excused that because I didn’t want to have numb shot. Exactly like a parent try to punish a kid who didn’t listen to him and follow the instruction. But I’m not a kid. I’m Crabtree’s patient. At least you should show some respect to your customer, is that right. But what I heard from Crabtree was that I was horrible because I didn’t trust Crabtree. I got hurt by Mr. Crabtree.
Then a young girl (just more than 20) came in the small room and took pictures for my 4 teeth with cavities. Crabtree then came in again to look the pictures. I told him I have a sensitive tooth experience after filling a cavity before. That’s why I didn’t want to have the numb shot. I could still feel my nerve pain and could let the dentist know about it. However, Crabtree said it’s his job to know whether my nerve pain or not. In addition, he said I didn’t trust him, which was horrible. But I don’t think I have done anything wrong. I’m just a cautious person. I try to protect myself, but didn’t hurt anybody. Crabtree, as a dentist, he should think the best benefit for his patient instead of blame his patient when he and patient’s opinions were different. He should spend effort to gain trust from me by himself instead of blaming me when I have not ready to trust him. In addition, I only saw Crabtree once or twice, each time 2-3 min for dental check. So to me, Crabtree was still a stranger. Asking a person to trust a stranger, it’s ridiculous. But Mr. Crabtree blamed me that I didn’t trust him, a stranger. In order to let me to trust him, he may need to explain what he would like to do at the beginning and let me, the patient, to decide whether continue or not. Because at least, it’s my tooth and once been removed, it would not grow out anymore. Of course, I need to be cautious. But Mr. Crabtree has removed so many teeth in the past 10 years, he was used to it.
After he blamed me that I was horrible because I didn’t trust him, he concluded that he won’t fill my teeth anymore and will only put some temporary filling material in the cavity so I need to find another dentist to fill my cavity. Then he left. The young girl who took pictures for me before came in the room again. She said she would give me some medicine and put something simply on my drilled tooth and let me chew on a cotton stick. Once she done and left, I asked another tooth assistant that who will put the temporarily filling material in the cavity for me? She said the left young girl had already done this. I was surprised and said I need a dentist to fill my cavity, even just a temporarily filling. I also asked that whether this young girl is a dentist. She said “we are all dental assistants”. So I was temporarily filled my cavity by a dental assistant, not a dentist, even my dentist was available there. They even don’t try to rearrange another dentist to help me fill my cavity. I also asked “was any other dentist available in your clinic?” One young assistant asked somebody and gave me a dentist’s phone number and name who doesn’t work in this dental clinic. The front desk person told me that all the dentist working in this clinic using the same procedure as Crabtree, so if Crabtree didn’t work for me, neither did others. I also asked “do you have any complain system?” The front desk person then smiled and said the dentists were actually their boss, but I could still talk to their manager if I wanted...
So in this way, right before year 2010 Christmas, I have my tooth drilled open and just temporarily be filled by a young dental assistant (just more than 20 years old) and helplessly left the dental clinic. Nobody try to help me in this dental clinic. This dental clinic’s name is Maitre and Crabtree Dental Group at 801 University Boulevard, A, Mobile, AL 36609.