A dental cartoon with the caption “The last moments of Dr. Steven Puckett, D.D.S.” appears in the February 23 edition of The New Yorker Magazine. The cartoon is a picture of a dentist who while being confronted by a shark says, “Hmm .. crowding, gum recession, and a high lip line.” I laughed out loud! As a dentist practicing in Suffolk County, Long Island, I can’t help myself from evaluating people’s dentition when they dare bare their teeth. Here the dentist in the cartoon is appraising the shark’s teeth as he is about to be devoured. I love it!
Dental cartoons typically make disparaging comments about dentists and focus on the “p” word (i.e. pain). This bothers me as it reinforces people’s fears and may encourage them to avoid proper dental care. Dentists are often the butt of comedians and situation comedies. Who can forget “The Little House of Horrors” or “The Marathon Man”?
I also read this week that Nickelodeon will introduce “Glenn Martin DDS” – an animated series about the dysfunctional family of an eccentric dentist.” I kid you not. Uh, oh … can’t wait to see this one!