Ok, so I've posted a few times, but thought I would start a thread where I can add posts as things happen. I am doing this partly for cathartic reasons, and partly because someone in the future may find it of some minor assistance in their own battle.
I last visited my dental practice 1.5 years ago, in pain with the gum around a rear wisdom tooth. He looked and informed me that the 'hole' I was sure I could see was only the dentine of the root showing, as the gum had receeded. I was given anti-biotics for a gum infection around the tooth and had a full cleaning job, with any gumline plaque removed etc. Prior to this my visits had been sporadic, I was scared to go incase they told me I needed anything done, but occasionally went to the hygenist for a session and once went with a tooth that was giving pain and needed a filling. My fear, through all of these last 15 years years has been that I will react to the local anaesthic (listed as a 'common fear' on the links above). Before this fear set in I had had local injections, when front crowns were done and for a filling, there had never been a reaction at all ! I am terrified of ALL medication, not just anything related to the dentist, and have even avoided paracetamol entirely for 12 years.
Every time I went to my dental practice the dentist had left and another appeared, so this hardly made for consistency. Over all these years, it was not suggested that I had any xrays, and a few observational check-ups were done. I am not dental phobic in the sense that I have none of the other fears listed above in the menu bar, pain does not concern me that much, but I am terrified of medications, and an allergy to anything the dentist uses - right from the cement to the mouth wash. I am also terrified about a reaction between a medication I take and the local anaesthetic. The bottom line is, I think I will die if I have that injection, anaphylaxis is my deepest fear !
4 weeks ago I snapped off one front crown (it didn't fall off, it broke on the tooth core) which had already been BADLY and incorrectly pinned (I have since found out). I went back desperate to have it just cemented back on and was told by the (next new) dentist at the practice that nothing was possible and an implant was needed. However, he did manage to cement it back on at a very jaunty angle !!! He didn't instill confidence and I left feeling panicked. I cancelled my follow-up appointment and started looking elsewhere for another practice.
I found another practice. I was honest with the dentist I met about my phobia. He took ages to explain things to me, he said he felt that we probably did have other options before the implant and was happy to try them. I didn't mention the wisdom tooth, as I was terrified that he would look at it and tell me it needed to come out. I left feeling reassured by my experience, and made a follow-up appointment for the crown to be removed, an assessement made and a temporary crown fitted - and hurrah - no local jab needed. In the following week the pain from the 'not a hole' wisdom tooth became bad, so I went back to see the dentist. In the week leading up to this appointment I was in a terrible state; coudln't eat, felt sick, was having panic attacks, insomnia and very low mood. He took one look and said it did indeed have a LARGE cavity and needed removing (cheers pervious dentist) as it was too late to fill. He then did some more xrays and found more 'hidden' cavities elsewhere !!!! EXACTLY the news I did not want, it would definitely mean a local for the removal of the wisdom and probably for other work required.
We talked at length about my phobia, he was kind but at a loss about how to progress with the phobia. I asked on this forum, and I asked him, about if people had reactions to the aneasethics...and he repeated what this forum tells you - very very very rare, almost none existent. I asked him if it would be possible, to try and break the fear, to have a teensy weensy amount in a gum to get myself used to it and see what happened. He has agreed to this, and has even said that he will keep the emergency kit (epi pen and such like) out on the side for my appointment. He really is a nice man.
So, here I am. My appointment is this Friday, for some work on the front crown. I don't need a local for this, but at my own suggestion I am going to 'try a bit', as I know very soon I need it for the removal of the wisdom tooth. He even agreed that I could have the adrenaline free version, as I had a fear of this accidentally causing a panic attack (and goodness knows,they need no encouragement at the moment !) I feel - and this is no exaggeration - as if I have signed my own terrible fate, that is how strong it feels. I have tried to rationalise, read all the positive things I can, and whilst my head tells me one thing, my heart comes back with 'something bad is going to happen though'. I have periods where I feel resigned to the impending situation, and then I switch quickly over to internal hysteria.
I mean, every day people do this, you don't see people dropping at the dentist....it doesn't happen. I know this, but I guess that is what phobias are all about, they aren't rational. They sure are a pain in the backside though !!!
I will post here as things progress. Take care all.