23, Never Been to the Dentist

J

jrgibson

Junior member
Joined
Oct 14, 2020
Messages
4
I feel the need to preface this with a background on myself. I have loving parents and I'm accomplished and live comfortably. I was an excellent student, I've graduated college, worked some wonderful jobs, and I am married to the best man. My greatest secret and ultimate source of shame is my teeth and the fact that I have never in my life been to the dentist. My parents were not raised going to the dentist and my mom had one pretty awful experience at the dentist, so we never went.
I remember being about 12 when I first noticed that one of my molars had chipped. It didn't hurt, and I was too afraid to ask my mom to go to the dentist (and what kid asks their parent to go to the dentist?) It got worse, and it's gotten to the point that it has broken down all the way to the gum line. I have another molar that has gradually died and chipped away now as well, and another molar that has some pretty obvious and painful cavities. I have severe crowding, and it is most obvious by my upper canine teeth being very high (I've been called vampire teeth). I am certain I have so much work needing to be done, with many small cavities, some large, and two major extractions of these chipped-away molars. Once that is all taken care of, I have serious need of orthodontic work, as this overcrowding has caused me so much embarrassment and shame in my life. I almost feel that my case is unfixable, and I have no one to confide to. I haven't told my husband, but I feel that this is something I need to take care of in order to maintain my physical and mental health. I feel alone, and I don't even know where to start, how to reach out to a dentist, and how to explain my situation to the dentist.
 
M

MumOfBoys1985

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 4, 2020
Messages
205
Hi,

You are not alone First of all. I am quite New here but honestly, this group has been a lifesaver for me. Everyone is really supportive and friendly, im sure others will be able to put your mind at ease about your worries.

What put you off going to a dentist as an adult? Do you have a fear of going, or is it that you don't know where to start? It can be hard to find a dentist you really get on with and trust, I have had some terrible ones but also, I have had three wonderful female dentists who have been so kind and caring.

Is there anyone you know who has a good dentist they can recommend? If not, maybe do a Google search for a dentist in your area, there are lots these days that specialise in people who have a phobia.

I would say, tell your husband how you feel, he will want to reassure you and support you. Does he see a dentist? If he does could he support you to make an appointment?
 
J

jrgibson

Junior member
Joined
Oct 14, 2020
Messages
4
I remained under my parent's insurance up until last year, and I didn't know how to explain to them my dental situation. I also feared making them feel guilty for not taking me to the dentist growing up. I do have a fear of going, however that is not the main thing. It's mostly that I feel shame and guilt for putting it off for so long. In addition, it is going to be costly to get my teeth fixed, so I wanted to wait until my finances were stable and I was done with school.
 
BoxerMom

BoxerMom

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 23, 2019
Messages
197
Hi,
Congratulations on the first step, and welcome! No one here will judge you, ever. We are all here because of our teeth and everyone has different situations - some are teenagers who’ve never been to a dentist, but also some are much older and never been. Some have been to a dentist before and had a traumatic experience and can’t go back. Some (a lot) feel the exact same shame and fear of judgement, or wonder if they’re the worst the dentist has ever seen. There are several wonderful dentists who are part of our group as well, and they give great advice. Us who are not dentists can only share our experiences and support. You are not alone.
 
T

thisisme

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2012
Messages
340
I feel the need to preface this with a background on myself. I have loving parents and I'm accomplished and live comfortably. I was an excellent student, I've graduated college, worked some wonderful jobs, and I am married to the best man. My greatest secret and ultimate source of shame is my teeth and the fact that I have never in my life been to the dentist. My parents were not raised going to the dentist and my mom had one pretty awful experience at the dentist, so we never went.
I remember being about 12 when I first noticed that one of my molars had chipped. It didn't hurt, and I was too afraid to ask my mom to go to the dentist (and what kid asks their parent to go to the dentist?) It got worse, and it's gotten to the point that it has broken down all the way to the gum line. I have another molar that has gradually died and chipped away now as well, and another molar that has some pretty obvious and painful cavities. I have severe crowding, and it is most obvious by my upper canine teeth being very high (I've been called vampire teeth). I am certain I have so much work needing to be done, with many small cavities, some large, and two major extractions of these chipped-away molars. Once that is all taken care of, I have serious need of orthodontic work, as this overcrowding has caused me so much embarrassment and shame in my life. I almost feel that my case is unfixable, and I have no one to confide to. I haven't told my husband, but I feel that this is something I need to take care of in order to maintain my physical and mental health. I feel alone, and I don't even know where to start, how to reach out to a dentist, and how to explain my situation to the dentist.

I have high canine teeth as well and have heard vampire teeth. My heart breaks for you and I understand the shame and guilt oh so well. Know that you don’t have to explain anything and you can share as much as you want to. You can just say “I’m embarrassed by my teeth” or “I’m in pain and I need help.” The dentist is there to help you and many of them won’t shame you or make you feel worse. I faced my 17 year drought of not going last year and started Invisalign two months ago, which can apparently bring down high canine teeth! I didn’t give my ortho the backstory but told him I was embarrassed and asked him to please not judge and he said “why would I do that? We all start somewhere.” It’s something very similar my hygienist said to me too when I had my first cleaning. We all start somewhere. Don’t think about everything all at once: the shame, the amount of work, the cost. Just focus on one step at a time. You can start to search for good dentists online and email a few practices. I wish you the best!
 
16andbadteethandgums

16andbadteethandgums

Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2020
Messages
24
I feel the need to preface this with a background on myself. I have loving parents and I'm accomplished and live comfortably. I was an excellent student, I've graduated college, worked some wonderful jobs, and I am married to the best man. My greatest secret and ultimate source of shame is my teeth and the fact that I have never in my life been to the dentist. My parents were not raised going to the dentist and my mom had one pretty awful experience at the dentist, so we never went.
I remember being about 12 when I first noticed that one of my molars had chipped. It didn't hurt, and I was too afraid to ask my mom to go to the dentist (and what kid asks their parent to go to the dentist?) It got worse, and it's gotten to the point that it has broken down all the way to the gum line. I have another molar that has gradually died and chipped away now as well, and another molar that has some pretty obvious and painful cavities. I have severe crowding, and it is most obvious by my upper canine teeth being very high (I've been called vampire teeth). I am certain I have so much work needing to be done, with many small cavities, some large, and two major extractions of these chipped-away molars. Once that is all taken care of, I have serious need of orthodontic work, as this overcrowding has caused me so much embarrassment and shame in my life. I almost feel that my case is unfixable, and I have no one to confide to. I haven't told my husband, but I feel that this is something I need to take care of in order to maintain my physical and mental health. I feel alone, and I don't even know where to start, how to reach out to a dentist, and how to explain my situation to the dentist.
Hey, I’m going through exactly the same situation as you are and I’m 17 years old (I made this account a few days before my birthday, hence the username). So you are definitely not alone. This forum is to help anyone who has a fear of the dentist and we all have different reasons as to why... so don’t feel bad about coming here, we want to help because we know how it’s like. I know it sucks to have some problems (so do I) but don’t be too harsh to yourself about it. What matters is that now you want to fix them So in my opinion you don’t feel like you have to be quilty or ashamed about it at all.
It’ll help to talk with a loved one like your husband. It can help lift the emotional burden and make you feel more confident going forward when you have support. talk to him about your fears, what you feel like doing, your emotions and feelings... and chances are he will respond with empathy which is veryimportant in situations like these. It’s also good to have a trusted person next to you so you can avoid being overwhelmed or intimidated by anything which may go wrong.
For finding a dentist it’s a good idea to ask people you know about recommendations... in particular ask about one who is good with nervous patients, has a high quality of work, has a good sense of humour (basically qualities you want in your ideal dentist). If you prefer not to talk about it with anyone then Google is a good option, in specific search for dentists with good experience in treating anxious patients, look for patient reviews and testimonials and the practice explaining how they help pt’s anxiety. If you find what looks like a gooddentist then you can choose to contact them to make an appointment, and do mention that you are fearful and what you would like them to do and if they will allow certain measures to be taken to ensure that you are comfortable during the visit (for example if they’ll allow someone to be with you etc.) and any other questions don’t feel scared to ask. finding a dentist you are comfortable with will help wonders, so if one makes you feel a little iffy don’t feel obliged to go through withthem. Again make sure you talk about what makes you afraid so that they are able to help you. Go at your own pace.

good luck in the meantime :XXLhug::hug4::clover:
 
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