When is it OK to pick up the phone and call someone?

Is the correct answer “Never”?

Tooth Truth Roopa Vikesh
2 min readMay 25


Me and hubby at a restaurant aeons ago. I need another dinner break like this one! Photo by the author.

Full disclosure: I’ve been busy and overwhelmed.

I’ve had water and electricity crises in my dental clinic just last fortnight, which have fortunately been sorted out after paying a lot of money for private service for the same. I’ve also been dealing with patient backlog and emergencies.

My question is:

Today, I ordered a water flosser for a patient who couldn’t find the exact item online. As he’s a sweet guy and is going to be my neighbor, I thought, “Easy peasy! I’ll just WhatsApp the business account that sells water flossers, it should be easy for me. One text, a Google Pay and the object will arrive at my doorstep and I can send it over to his home.”

However, after I texted the business account, the lady called me back.

I was having lunch!

It is my only lunch. My only break between shifts. I do NOT want to receive a call during my lunch that I do not HAVE to receive. (Like a patient who might pay me who is also in a kind of distress that I can relieve easily — so a financial + ego boost for me. I’m shallow that way.)

My question is:

How far is it correct to call someone to confirm or clarify something that can be communicated in a text message?

Shouldn’t the rule be:

Texts should be replied with texts?

Just because WhatsApp allows a phone number to be visible, is it correct etiquette or business practice to go ahead and make that phone call?

Or is it just lazy and greedy on the part of the business?

You tell me. I’m waiting.

I’ll reply with a Medium response, of course. Medium’s wonderful with boundaries that way!



Tooth Truth Roopa Vikesh

I don’t just create smiles, I inspire them! Dentist, mom—Jamshedpur, India.