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Afraid of Dentist?

S

samy

Junior member
Joined
Jun 16, 2006
Messages
1
I am not sure why should anyone be afraid of the dentist. Modern technology is so advanced that most of the procedures are done pain free and medicines are there to reduce pain. ddctvm.com

Thanks.
 
harper

harper

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 28, 2006
Messages
772
Location
west sussex
hi sammy
well i was/am scared because when i was 12 i was badly treated by my dentist and my mum was on his side. i have lived with that for 22yrs and up untill 6 months ago. its not always about pain im not really scared as such about the procedures but how i would be treated,would i get told opff because they were so bad. im insecure and new things and different people scare me . i trust my dentist with my life now but i still feel unwell on the day and it takes me about 10 minutes to actually go in. so its not just about pain
 
N

Nat

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 16, 2005
Messages
768
I am not that afraid of the pain its more like the way I am treated, just like Harper says when its about the way new people look at you and if they are going to judge you, I also dont like having the procedures done, many people have different fears regarding the dentist, its not always about being in pain
 
G

Girlblue

Member
Joined
Jun 4, 2006
Messages
22
I think its silly to say that! Ppl have fears for different reasons and believe me,that fear is raw and very real.Ppl have phobias of not just pain! It could be fear of letting a stranger poke around in your mouth,or the smell or sight of the surgery or the rubber gloves they wear etc.My fear is of the actual dentist itself.Everyones different and its easy to judge when your not in their shoes.
 
N

Nat

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 16, 2005
Messages
768
Samy, If i was to make you confront your fears how would you react? Would you like it if someone said I can believe your scared of that??? Its easier to judge peoples fears when you dont have it yourself, trust me I have had many people say to me I cant believe your THAT scared of the dentist. Yeh maybe I dont look like I am but I would never laugh or judge anyone elses fears as I know what its like to be in their shoes.
 
K

kitty

Member
Joined
May 30, 2006
Messages
77
My fear comes from two places. First as a child, I was scared of needles so I had an entire mouth full of teeth filled without novacaine. The dentist would always say it would not hurt too much. It did. So, experience has programmed my brain and my body to freak out at the very thought of a dentist. This is despite many more positive than negative experiences as an adult. I'm happy Samy that you had good experiences.

Second, I was abused as a child. That caused me to feel vulnerable, powerless and smothered during the abusive acts. When I am reclined in that chair, I feel vulnerable, powerless and smothered. My psyche does not comprehend the different causes of those feelings, it just reacts the same way.

Neither of these do I seem to be able to get control over, even though I understand them. It is a subconscious response. You cannot begin to understand someone elses pain until you have walked a mile in their shoes, Samy.
 
P

Penny

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 7, 2006
Messages
176
Hi.... I can relate totally to kitty, except I was attacked once by a stranger when I was 15. I also had a terrible army dentist as a small child who belittled, shocked and caused a lot of pain. I got over the dentist problem, until I was 20, when a new dentist started to clean my teeth without warning during a check up, water splashed down my throat, I got such a shock, the two events slammed together and I passed out. The phobia quickly followed. The shock and fear, and physical harm, together with the vulnerablity of the position and the fact I am letting a stranger very intimate contact, sends me into blind panic and my instict screams at me to just run away. If you do not have this fear you are very lucky indeed. everybody is frightened of something, if your fear isn't something you HAVE to do, thank the gods, because you are lucky.
 
M

melodyl

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 21, 2006
Messages
391
Samy:

Let me explain dental phobia to you.

First, it has absolutely nothing to do with pain!!! of course, we live in 2006 so there are numbing stuff. I get the Wand. My phobia guy does not use syringes, needles, anything like that. I never feel being numbed. No pain, nothing. Actually, the only discomfort is after you go home and the next day when the numbness wears off, you are sore where you had the wand stuff done.

Now here's why we have dental phobia.
some time ago, all of us had a horrible experience at the dentist. Maybe he was a bully, maybe he used a needle and his hand slipped and he hit the wrong place. or god forbid, he had to drill and he did not numb the area and he hit a nerve. Do you honestly think that a kid sitting in a dental chair (young and scared at this new experience), and having a big guy in a white lab coat just tell you to "sit still and don't fuss", well do you think that is going to sit well with that youngster?

Imagine having teeth drilled and you are in agony and no one cares.

That is indelibly routed in our minds. We have all suffered somewhere in our past at the hands of some horrible dentist who couldn't care less about us.

Now fast forward 20 years and we all grow up and do you think that magically (just because there is technology) that we are going to just go and sit in this stranger's office in a strange chair and lay down in the chair with a big wrapped around us and the person has instruments in their hands and they are going in our mouths.

You have absolutely no idea at the terror some of us feel. This can be paralyzing.
This is why many many many of us don't go for years.

I have been lucky enough to find my "good guy". A dental phobia dentist who uses The Wand.
No more needles. Now, do you think I look forward to going there? Of course not. The office staff is as nice as could be. My dentist is an absolutely honey!!!!

But I still got scared and had to take a xanax before I sat in the chair.

But I went. I sat, and ultimately let the dental hygienist do her stuff. She had to scrape the tartar off my back teeth. That was hard to tolerate (even with topical numbing) so the dentist came in and used The Wand, numbed me up and she went to town. Didn't feel a thing.

It's all in the desensitization. If you do the same thing day after day, you don't worry about it much because you do it every day.

I bet, if I went to my dentist and sat in that chair every single day, in about two weeks, I probably wouldn't give it much thought. But here we are, some of us, not going for years and years and we get a toothache, and the anticipation is much much worse than the actual visit.

Believe me, you have to walk in our phobic shoes to ever possibly understand what goes through our minds. How we obsess over the next visit. OUr minds play bad tricks on us.

We only relax, when we get out of that chair and go home.

Believe me, it's no picnic to have dental phobia.

Just my two cents.
Melody
 
J

jeanc200358

Guest
With me, it isn't the pain, nor the drill, nor the dentist, nor sights, smells, sounds, etc. It wasn't any of that until something happened to cause me to have a panic reaction to the lidocaine w/epi...whether he inadvertently injected a vein or whether it was that and a combination of the propensity for a number of things to set off a panic attack...and once it happened that one time, it happened again while being tested for an allergy and again for a very brief moment before the Valium took effect. I don't know if you've ever had your heart rate spontaneously go up to, like, 150 bpm for "no reason at all," but it's scary as hell. And you will do ANYTHING to avoid having that happen. If it hadn't been for IV sedation, I know I would not have been able to face going. I will NEVER volunteer to go through a panic attack, I don't care how long I've had them. You never get used to them to the point you'd willingly allow one to happen to you.

But fortunately, now they do have IV/oral sedation and other calming measures to help you cope with your anxiety, whatever it may be. I even had to convince myself that that was safe, because my mind was doing its best to convince me otherwise. I just finally realized I HAD to do it; my appearance and my health are far more important to me than is my anxiety disorder. If I didn't at some point give in to it, I'd know that it conquered me, and I've been through far too much in the past 30-plus years to let something like a dental procedure paralyze me with fear. Nevertheless it was a very tough thing to go through. And all I can say is it is much much worse putting it off over and over than to just go ahead and get it over with. There is something to be said for the old adage, "There is nothing to fear but fear itself," because no truer statement has ever been uttered, IMHO.
 
M

melodyl

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 21, 2006
Messages
391
Jean. Your reaction sounds like you are allergic to ephinephrin.
Next time you get a shot of novocaine, tell them what happens and they will use the shot without the epinephrin.

That's exactly what happened to two of my friends.

When they told the dentist, he gave them alternative shots and they were just fine.

take care,
Melody
 
J

jeanc200358

Guest
No, I'm not allergic to epi. That is impossible. Your body manufactures epinephrine naturally, so, if you were allergic to it, you'd be dead.

I was tested for allergy to lidocaine and the preservatives in lidocaine and tested negative for that, too, but I still had a panic reaction to it, nonetheless. I didn't have an allergic type reaction at all, which would have included itching, hives, and possibly even worse, which would have been an analphylactic reaction. The allergist assured me it was an anxiety reaction. My adrenal system is just screwed up in such a way that there are various things that can cause a panic reaction.

If you'll read my other posts, you'll see that I just had multiple extractions done two days ago. Since I was having so many teeth pulled, it was prudent for them to use epinephrine, so the bleeding would be kept to a minimum and so that the duration of the lidocaine would be adequate. That's precisely the reason why I had IV sedation, specifcally the Valium part of it, was to prevent me from having a spontaneous panic reaction -- and, I'm happy to say, it worked!

:)
 
M

melodyl

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 21, 2006
Messages
391
Jean:

Hi. Just to clarify things a bit, I have two friends who cannot take a novocaine injection with the epi added (at least I think it's the epi that did what it did to them).

The same exact thing happened to both of them.

they were sitting in the dentist's chair, he gave them a shot of novocaine (with that thing that makes it work faster, and I am pretty sure it's epinephrin but I could be wrong and if I am I apologize).

Anyway, in both cases, their heart started to beat so fast they thought it would jump out of their chest. They both got a facial flush that started from their checks all the way up to the top of their forehead.

The dentist then told them. I can't give you the novocain with the (whatever it is) in it. You had an allergic reaction.

I will have to ask them what the heck was in that shot.

Anyway, just wanted to share.

Take care,
be well.

melody
 
J

jeanc200358

Guest
I had the exact same reaction, too, and I figured it was the epinephrine as well. You cannot be allergic to epinephrine because it is a naturally occurring chemical in your body. If you were allergic to it, you'd be dead. The next time I went to the dentist they insisted I go for allergy testing and they tested the lidocaine and specified very strongly for me to bring vials of lidocaine that they use WITHOUT epinephrine. They wanted to make sure I was not allergic to the lidocaine or anything else in the lidocaine (e.g., preservatives). Even without the epinephrine, during one of the last "test" injections, I had a panic reaction, though not as bad as what had happened before.

The allergist assured me it was not an allergic reaction, but an anxiety reaction. I asked why I would have an anxiety reaction to lidocaine? And he said something could have triggered the memory of the previous experience. And I think he was right, because, when my arm started feeling a little numb, it kinda freaked me out. I have suffered off and on from panic attacks for over 30 years, so it doesn't take much stimuli to set off a really fast heartbeat in me. I laid down for a few minutes and after a while, everything was ok.

My guess is, if your friends had a true allergic reaction, it was to the sodium metabisulfite or some other preservative or to the local anesthetic itself. Also, from what I understand, a true allergic reaction would have included the typical signs of an allergy -- hives, itching, throat constricted, stuff like that.

This excerpt (from this site) might be of interest to you:

"Allergy to Epinephrine
It is impossible to be allergic to epinephrine (epinephrine is the same as adrenaline). Our bodies produce epinephrine all the time. If you were allergic to it, you'd be long dead before reading this page, never mind seeing a dentist...

Symptoms like:

a racing heart
shaking uncontrollably
breaking out in a cold sweat
not being able to breathe properly (breathing rapidly/hyperventilating), leading to dizziness, lightheadedness and tingling in fingers, toes and lips
are all signs of an adrenaline rush - but it's unlikely that the epinephrine in the injection caused it. The amount of epi in local anesthetics is tiny compared to the amount your body naturally pumps out. The reason your body produces adrenaline is to prepare you for a fight-or-flight situation, and an increase in heart rate and blood pressure mean that you can run faster! If you do decide to do a runner, please let your dentist know first... that way, they'll be able to remove any sharp objects between you and the door :).

On very rare occasions, the epi may be accidentally injected into a vein instead of muscle tissue (the local anaesthetic is usually ineffective in this instance). This can cause a very dramatic increase in heart rate. While not dangerous, such an experience can certainly be unsettling, but the chances of it happening again are extremely slim.

Some people do appear to react more sensitively to the epi in injections than others. It is possible to use a local anesthetic without epi. However, epinephrine is added for a good reason: it makes the local anaesthetic work longer and more efficiently. For example, the most commonly used local anesthetic (lidocaine 2% with 1:100,000 epi) numbs the tooth for one hour, but without the epi, it only numbs the tooth for 5-10 minutes. Epi also stops soft tissues from bleeding.

Mepivacaine and prilocaine work for a reasonable amount of time even without the epi and can be used instead. But it may be more difficult to achieve profound numbness without epi. In this case, using laughing gas or IV sedation in addition to the local anaesthetic may be helpful."

Here's the link along with other allery information I hope you will find informative.


:D

Sheila
 
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