Some of my friends go to a therapist for advice. Others go to the bar because bartenders are also known to give good advice. (At least it sounds good after you\u2019ve had a few drinks.) Still others visit their parish priest and are even brave enough to go to confession. I go to my dental hygienist. It\u2019s cheaper and I get my teeth cleaned at the same time. Lisa is a master at what she does. I leave the office with polished teeth, bleeding gums and enough advice to last six months until my next appointment. She could have her own radio program or team up with Dr. Phil and offer oral hygiene tips while she\u2019s helping young people recover from broken relationships. Just remember that teeth usually last longer than a relationship, so don\u2019t neglect them. She offers guidance on parenting, marriage, pets, and of course, molars. (Did I mention she gives stock tips, and if you\u2019re a regular patient, she\u2019ll share some of her favorite Italian recipes.) I\u2019m not going to tell you her last name because it\u2019s hard enough getting an appointment. It\u2019s amazing how much advice she can give while she\u2019s got that ultrasonic plaque remover whizzing in my mouth with water spraying everywhere. She does the talking. I do the listening. She could have been a family therapist, a marriage counselor or a dog obedience trainer, but she decided to go into dental hygiene. If she ever gets her degree in psychotherapy, she\u2019ll be able to charge four times as much, but I don\u2019t think my dental insurance will pay for a cleaning and therapy, too. She gives great tips on oral health. Even though I suffered hair loss, I won\u2019t suffer teeth loss because of her. And I\u2019m convinced if she had been my hair stylist, I wouldn\u2019t be bald today. I always arrive at my appointment with unsightly coffee stains on my incisors. Lisa told me that to prevent stains, I should drink my coffee through a straw, so while I was at Starbucks, I asked for a straw when they handed me a steaming hot Cafe Americano. (WARNING: Do not attempt this without supervision from the American Dental Association or Dr. Fauci. And NEVER attempt it without wearing a face mask to protect yourself against COVID and hot coffee.) The first sip burned my tongue. The second sip burned the roof of my mouth. The third sip singed my nose hairs. And by the fourth sip, I was coughing up coffee, and I could hear the young baristas snickering, \u201cLook at that crazy Baby Boomer trying to drink hot coffee through a straw. The next thing you know, he\u2019ll try to eat sushi with a straw.\u201d (I did, but it didn\u2019t work.) Lisa also tells me to floss every day, especially if I want to keep my teeth until I pass into the Great Hereafter, which may be difficult because I have more gold crowns than the cast of \u201cThe Sopranos.\u201d I had to get them because I cracked a couple of molars after biting into olive pits at the Olive Garden, if you can believe that. On my recent visit, she gave me terrific advice about the perils, pains and pleasures of parenthood. \u201cParents have to adapt,\u201d she said. What a revolutionary concept. All my life, I thought it was the other way around. I thought kids were supposed to \u201cadapt\u201d to their parents, but I had it wrong. Since no two kids are alike, we have to be tolerant of their idiosyncrasies. Besides, adapting will keep us from developing an ulcer, having a nervous breakdown or even worse ... grinding our teeth, which can cause a lot of dental damage. \u201cAre you suggesting I have to treat my kids, my grandkids and my spouse with the same tolerance I show the dog?\u201d I asked. She nodded and muttered, \u201cYes, it\u2019s a fundamental principle that governs pet companionship and marriage: \u201cAn obedient dog is a happy dog and an obedient husband is a happy husband.\u201d Hmmm, that\u2019s dog food for thought. I tried to apply her philosophy. When my wife complained because I didn\u2019t hang up my clothes and left them on the bed, I told her, \u201cMy dental hygienist says you have to adapt.\u201d That didn\u2019t go over well. So I tried to redeem myself. \u201cHave you ever tried drinking your coffee through a straw?\u201d I asked. Former Stamford Advocate and Greenwich Time Editor Joe Pisani can be reached at email@example.com.