I have a friend who, at least for a few months, thought the dentist was the only person she’d ever seen who cared about her.
“I thought the other dentists were all just people I should be hanging out with,” she says.
“Then I heard that she was going to become the next president of the United States.”
I think I was wrong, she said.
She has since changed her mind.
The woman who is now president of America’s dentists union, the American Dental Association, says that Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris climate agreement could affect dentists in the future.
The association, which represents about 400,000 American dentists who are part of the largest dental group in the United State, has warned that dentists may not be able to do their jobs if Trump is in the White House.
“The fact that President Trump decided to pull the U.S. out of international agreements that have already been proven to have benefits for people and the environment, that is really going to have a significant impact on the health and safety of our profession,” says Dr. Karen Schaff, who represents the Dental Practice and Health Workers, which represent some of the nation’s largest and most skilled dentists.
“We’re already seeing a lot of dental patients being forced to choose between a toothbrush and a dentist’s office.
And then we have the potential for this to impact our ability to offer those services.”
Trump, who is also a dentist, has made a number of inflammatory comments about dentists and dentists’ ability to practice safely, as well as the way the country is being run.
“It’s just so sad that the president of our country is now taking us to the cleaners,” she told an audience at a campaign rally in New Hampshire last November.
Trump is not the first to take the American dentistry association to task.
In 2014, then-candidate Joe Biden made headlines for saying that dentistry should be closed to immigrants because of a “disease that is killing our people.”
“We have to start putting dentists out of business,” Biden said.
“They’re just people that aren’t going to take care of you if you have a bad tooth.
They don’t know what they’re doing.”
But the dentists association’s Schaff says it is important to recognize that there is an opportunity for dentistry to do a better job, both within the U: The American Dinal Association, for example, is already planning to host a conference this fall, including an appearance by Trump, where the president’s comments could be raised as an example of how dentists should handle Trump’s actions.
“If you look at what the president did and what he has been doing, I think he has really gone after dentists,” says Schaff.
“But I think you can look at the other actions that he’s taken as well.
And he’s actually trying to address the problems that dentisters are facing.
And it’s really important that we do this.”
And it could be a while before we get to see a dentist take to the streets.
“As soon as the president decides that he wants to have something like that, it will be a problem,” says Shaff.