Friday, July 10, 2015

Which Watch Should You Wear to the Dentist?

Which watch should you wear to the dentist?

Think carefully, because this decision could affect you for years to come. Watch enthusiasts have long fretted over which watch to wear for the zombie apocalypse. The zombie apocalypse will likely never come, but sooner or later you're going to the dentist.

You may be in the mood to wear your Rolex Cosmograph Daytona or your Omega Speedmaster to the dentist, because you’re always in that mood, but that decision would be a mistake. Glancing at that Vacheron Constantin or Patek Philippe on your wrist may momentarily distract you from the unrelenting whine and whir of the dentist’s drill, but your horological comfort isn’t the only consideration when it comes to choosing a watch for your dentist visit.

Wearing the Rolex Datejust Pearlmaster
in 18K gold with diamonds won’t earn you a
discount at the dentist. Photo from Rolex.
The watch you want to wear to the dentist should say, “Yes, I can afford you, so don’t skimp on anything important or that may involve alleviating pain.” Your watch should not say, as it might if you wear a digital watch: “I’m of moderate means, so do what you can, and if you need to skip on Novocaine, I’m happy to save a few bucks here and there.”

But wearing your favorite, most expensive watch sends another message that ought not to be conveyed to somebody who, with a stroke of a pen or click of a button, can turn your $200 filling into a $2,000 procedure described entirely in Latin that’s eons more advanced than what you learned in eighth grade. Your diamond-adorned Cartier says to your dentist, “Go ahead and charge me whatever you want. I won’t care.” Don’t wear your diamond watch to the dentist.

Some years ago when I went to a parents’ potluck supper at my daughter’s school, I wore a Rolex Oyster Datejust. Why not? One should wear one’s Rolex wherever and whenever you want.

Then came the fundraising part. What?! What?! All parents are expected to donate to the school, and the school had a captive audience. All of a sudden, my watch was a giant bullseye: “Him! Ask him for money! He has a Rolex, so he must have lots of it to spare.”

You might love your Casio, but it says to your
dentist, "I can't afford anesthesia." 
Noooo. When the fundraising part of the evening started, I casually and surreptitiously moved my shirtsleeve so it covered my entire watch. I think that nobody noticed, which was, of course, both a happy and sad thing, because what’s the fun in wearing your favorite watch if you need to hide it?

Circling back to our original problem, then: What’s the best watch to wear to the dentist? Here’s where your vintage watch comes in handy: It looks good enough to say “use as much anesthesia as you think is good, and then top it off with a little more, please,” without attracting extra 0s to your bill.

A vintage watch has another advantage, too, when it comes to a place like the dentist: Your visit might take 30 minutes, 45 minutes, or, sorry to say, longer. Does your 25-year-old Hamilton run fast or slow? At the dentist it makes no difference. This is one place where it doesn’t matter how accurate your watch is, because time will be running at its own, less-than-desired pace. Sometimes it’s good not to know how long something takes.


  1. but your horological comfort isn’t the only consideration when it comes to choosing a watch for your dentist visit.
    dental crown