I have to say,,, thank you so much for your story. Our stories are remarkably similar. Right down to my dentist being ill. He has had three heart attacks and is in his fifties. He is down to working two days a week. That is the reason I always go to see him on Fridays. I constantly worry about what I will do when he is no longer able to treat me. I, like you have made all my appointments and I do everything I can to manage my fears and this phobia that I wouldn't wish on another person, ever. I have done everything I can think of to work on this and to try and understand why I can't beat this.
I also visit this forum daily because I find it as a source of strength in this journey and it is so nice to know I am not the only one going through these issues. You have been an incredible help to me and a great source of support. I hope I can return the favor. On the 22nd I will be sending prayers, hugs, and support your way. I copied and pasted one of my first posts, so that you could read a little background on me.
I am not sure if I will ever be cured of my phobia, but I would really like to be able to go to a visit without being physically ill and sleepless at some point. You sound like you really have a handle on your situation, I am happy for you and thanks again for sharing. Reno
Questions from a complete phobic
First of all I will give you a little background on myself. I am one of those unfortunate people that just does not get numb. When I was a small child my parents sent me to a dentist that was a sadist in my opinion and the root of my phobia. I would tell him over and over that it still hurt and he would not give me more Novocain. My parents were poor so they did not take me to the dentist unless there was a major issue, so every visit to the dentist equated to pain to the 10th power to me. They never went in with me either, so they never saw what this man did to me. Let me tell you it has been the subject of countless nightmares for me to this day, and continuously when I have a pending appointment. I will spare everyone the details (unless someone wants to know, just ask). As an adult I could go to the dentist (I had insurance as well as money) and still would do anything to avoid it. On the good side I was blessed with strong straight teeth, so I hadn't had a ton of cavities (no crowns or extractions etc). After I got pregnant with my son I could tell I was getting some major build up on my teeth and that I really should see a dentist. I forced myself to go even though I have over the top anxiety and can't sleep, eat, have boughts of diarrhea, at times vomiting etc. No one ever knew of my phobia as I hid it at all costs. I forced myself to go and face my fears. I got a deep clean and scale and had my old amalgam fillings replaced with composite fillings since mine were very old. That was in 1994....
Jump forward 18 years and one morning I as flossing my teeth and the whole back of tooth #30 flew out of my mouth. My Fiance said he had never seen me look so devastated in the whole 7 years he had been with me. I was hysterically crying on his shoulder, and as he held me my whole life story of the phobia that had haunted me my whole life spilled out. He had absolutely no idea about any of it and was completely shocked at all the things I had been through as a child. He was patient and understanding and said he would do anything he could to help me get through this. I made the appointment that I dreaded most in life. He drove me to the dentist and I poured my guts out to him as well. He was very reassuring, kind and promised to not do anything to me unless he was positive that I would not feel a thing.
He told me that I was lucky that I only needed a crown since the tooth was not decayed, it was just that the old filling had broken. It took 10 shots for him to work on this tooth. He also told me that I had four additional cavities that I needed repaired I was of course devastated again, but I did get them all fixed with lots of nitrous and xanax and the loving help of his office. That was October 2013. Since all that happened I have been going regularly to get my teeth cleaned every two months, because I am paranoid of new cavities and I thought my fear would go away if I went often and was familiar with everyone at my dental office. Unfortunately it hasn't, but I have been managing. I even have to use nitrous and xanax to go to these cleaning appointments.
FYI*This is the same tooth that I am having the crown removal on.