Fame, faith and flossing – and demon dentists

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MASKS: Do they even have faces behind them?

SURELY odontophobia has to be up there amongst the nastiest, cruellest phobias known to man

YOU know how, some mornings, you wake up ready to take on the world, feeling invincible, immortal and potentially omniscient? Well, yesterday wasn’t one of them. 

There’s a short preface to this tale. I’ve always had a fear of dentists, odontophobia it’s called, a condition that hasn’t improved over the years. But yesterday, when a filling and I unexpectedly parted company, I had to bite the, err, bullet, and go and sit in that dreaded dentist’s chair.

Now, phobias exist for almost anything. But odontophobia surely has to be up there amongst the nastiest, cruellest phobias known to man. I mean, let’s look at what you can expect:

1. There’s always an aquarium. To calm you. Huh! All those goldfish swimming around with their eyes bulging out of their heads. Don’t they just look as if they’re silently screaming ‘I’m A Celebrity (Fish), Get Me Out Of Here!’

2. The dental staff. Yes, all of them. Their teeth are too pristine white. They need to join the rest of humanity and down some coffee or red wine occasionally. It’s unnatural. And unfair.

3. You sit in that uncomfortable chair and two sets of eyes peek at you from behind masks. Remind you of a horror flick? The Chainsaw Massacre, maybe? I could never pick out any dental hygienist in a line-up. Do they even have faces behind those masks? 

4. Tools: You know the, um, drill. One’s sucking saliva while the other drills, producing seven times the decibel level of the entire BA 747 fleet. Triffic! The dentist asks about your plans for Easter, if you’ve seen any good movies. Huh? Excuse me while I drool and try to work out how I’m supposed to talk? Any response sounds so trite and makes as much sense as asking Bruce Forsyth for his views on George Osborne’s budget. 

‘Nuff said. I floss and I brush, but I do not enjoy the dentist’s. I legged it away from there with a face like curdled milk and faster than Banksy would to a freshly painted white wall.

Nora Johnson’s thrillers ‘Landscape of Lies’, ‘Retribution’, ‘Soul Stealer’, ‘The De Clerambault Code’ (www.nora-johnson.com) available from Amazon in paperback/eBook (€0.89;£0.79) and iBookstore. All profits to Cudeca charity.   

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