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I really need the advice and encouragement of my friends right now.  Here's the thing, I know I need to go to the dentist (I have known this for years now) but I am dental phobic.  I'm not terrified or anything, but I get extremely anxious at the mere thought of entering a dental surgery and am fearful of the pain (more like discomfort really) that treatment will bring.  I also don't like the smell and noises associated with dentistry.

I've never had a single positive dental experience.  I've never gone for a check-up and been given the all-clear.  I've always needed treatments, starting about age 10 with extractions and fillings, then orthodontic treatment until I was about 13.  After that I steered well clear and I would only go to a dental hospital when I was in agony with toothache, which always resulted in an extraction (about 4 in a 2-3 year period).  Not good at all.  

The last time I went, which was about 3 years ago, I was told I had periodontitis, an advanced form of gum disease.  It would appear to be mild to moderate - my gums have receded slightly and gaps are forming between some of my teeth but there is no pain, no loose teeth, and my gums are still firm and pink.  I'm hoping therefore that I'll only need a few deep cleanings and not any kind of periodontal surgery, which I think is for really advanced cases only.  I've put my gum condition to the back of my mind but on Saturday, for some reason, it popped into my head and wouldn't leave.  I was online all Saturday night and all of today reading about treatments and success stories from other phobics and I felt a bit better but SHIT I am still so scared.  :(

Please, can anyone reassure me or kick my ass to get to a dentist.  I'll have to register with a new one now that I've moved house, or maybe go private.  I just want this worry to go away so that I can get a good nights sleep but I'm so scared of dentists.  I know that every time I do make myself go the imagined outcome is always much worse than the reality but still - so scared.


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 24th, 2007 09:54 pm (UTC)
Ohh, dentists... I used to hate them, too. Some years ago I had to go because of a root inflammation. It hurted like hell. Well, I went and I found out that it wasn't that terrible at all. The doctor - a woman - was very nice (and I think that's one of the most important things when it comes to doctors). She explained me that she had to 'kill the root' and I was like 'oohhh', but I got an incredible local anaesthetic. I felt nothing. Since then I'm going to the dentist at least once a year for a check.

My recs:
1. Take a friend or familiy member with you.
2. Tell the doc that you're afraid!
3. Ask for a local anaesthetic. I promise you'll feel nothing. Ok, hurts a bit during the injection, but it's only for a sec.
4. Yup, try to be relaxed.
5. Take your mp3 player with you (if you really hate the noises around you). ;)

Um, yeah, go to the doc...
Jun. 24th, 2007 10:36 pm (UTC)
Thank you, some great advice. X I actually prefer to go alone, as having another person there makes me more nervous for some reason. :) I agree that it's really important to get someone nice. The last one was not understanding at all - English was not her first language so there was a bit of a language barrier to begin with, and she didn't properly explain what she was doing and why. She also lectured a bit and when I told her I was nervous and didn't like dentists she just said "gee thanks" and made no attempt to reassure me. :( I've always had an injection, which strangely has never bothered me - I know lots of peeps are afraid of the needle but its never been a big deal to me. I just wish I could be offered the gas to knock me out completely but its never been an option for me. I was strongly considering taking along my mp3 players; I think that's an excellent idea? But do you think that's quite a common request or will they think me rude? lol.
Jun. 24th, 2007 11:22 pm (UTC)
Dentists are your friends :) They do seem scary, but I'm getting dental surgery this year too, and even though I'm scared, I'm even more scared of my teeth getting screwed up because I didn't go to the dentist. Think about it like that :D
Jun. 25th, 2007 01:28 am (UTC)
I completely understand your fear. My fear really didn't start until I was about 15. Had a very bad dentist and since then I have been scared to go. Last year, my tooth was hurting so bad there wasn't anything to numb the pain. I was nearly overdosing myself on asprin just to be able to deal with it. And I don't even like taking medicine.
Long story short, I went to the dentist and made it very well known I had some bad experiences and that I was still scared to even be there even though I was in bad pain. It ended up not being that bad at all. The dentist was very gentle. I am still scared to go now. But it's an irrational fear because of a a bad dentist I had years ago.
sakura_memories's recommendations are very good ones.
I have heard of some dentist providing headphones for their patients, so I would just ask if they minded you listened to yours. When I started going again and I would get scared or nervous, I just tried to keep in mind I was doing it so I wouldn't have worse problems later.
I know it is scary but it is so much better than not going at all and causing more damage.
Jun. 25th, 2007 01:41 am (UTC)
I'm not big on dentists either, though I'm getting much better. What I always did was to bring my CD player with me and try to tune everything out.

With that said - you NEED to get to the dentist. Your mouth is very important and you need to take care of it. So . . . *boot in the butt*
Jun. 25th, 2007 01:01 pm (UTC)
I sympathis,e but just htink, if you don't, it will be worse in the lond run, just get it over with.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )


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