A Personal Story: A Dentist You Can Trust – Joyce, Woodstock


Joyce and her husband live in Woodstock, Vermont, and have never had dental insurance. About six or seven years ago they both had quite a bit of work done on their old fillings. Three at a time, the old fillings were drilled out and replaced by a ceramic pearl. Unfortunately the dentist drilled up too far into the root which resulted in buckle decay in their back molars. This dentist later closed her practice and went out of business, before she could repair the problem. Now Joyce and her husband were both faced with tens of thousands of dollars of work they needed done, with no way to pay for it, and nowhere to go.

Fortunately, they knew they were moving to a town with a reputable dental practice. This practice referred them to a grant program for residents of their town. Joyce and her husband applied as soon as they moved. They got the grant for the dental work, and their new dentist came up with a comprehensive and systematic plan for all the dental work they needed to have done. “She gave us a very complete plan of action and prioritized it for us, and told us how much (money) they could take off… She actually did the work and took out those things that we had in our mouths, and fixed the buckles.”

Joyce and her husband are now on a maintenance plan of cleanings and checkups which they can afford to pay out of pocket. “We think that she’s great and we are ever grateful for this program because, guess what, we would not have been able to do it. I don’t know what was going to happen to us… We were devastated when we realized what really had happened and what was happening in our mouths, and what we had to do to try to rectify it, until we heard about that program. And without that, I really don’t know…”

Joyce still has some work she needs done. A root canal by the first dentist has left her with a pain in the tooth, and a small bump. Her current dentist recommends some oral surgery and repacking and redressing the tooth. Her dentist thinks the problem may be affecting Joyce’s immune system. When it flares up, Joyce does everything she can to bolster her immune system from a dietary angle, but isn’t able to afford to have the dental work done.

Illustration by Dennis Pacheco.

    Leave a Reply

    Please type the characters of this captcha image in the input box

    Please type the characters of this captcha image in the input box