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Depressed, shaken and embarrassed from appt.



Junior member
Jan 15, 2007
Although my root canal at my general dentist was 100% covered by my dental insurance so it cost me NOTHING (except the cost of the nitrous oxide which is not covered), it was so not worth it. I really need some encouraging words of support from you all, so I thought I'd post my experience yesterday.

I had yesterday's appointment at 4pm, which I will NEVER do again because the office was FILLED with busy, loud and boisterous kids, which is SO not relaxing. Future appointments will be between 10am-2pm so it's not as chaotic.

I called this dentist Monday to see if he could prescibe me a couple valium pills to take before my appointment and he said no. He never prescibes valium. Just pain meds and antibiotics. I explained my anxiety and nerves and he said the nitrous oxide would help, but that is an out of pocket cost of $80 vs. a $5.00 copay for valium. Anyway, I figured I'd just take a vicoden (which he had rx'd me at my previous appointment when I had pain and infection in a tooth) and that would help.

Well, appt is a 4pm right? Well, soon it's 4:25. I go to counter and ask how late the dentist is running and they checked and said it'd be another 20 mins. So I go outside to call my husband to see if I should just reschedule or what because it was just a zoo in there with all the kids. He said yeah, so I went back inside to reschedule but before I got to the counter they were calling me back.

I asked the aide "They told me it was going to be another 20 mins" and she said that a room opened up so they could take me now. I asked if the procedure would begin then or if I'd just be sitting here. And she said they were going to get started.


They put me on nitrous oxide and let me sit there for 20 mins. That gas dehydrates you so I needed water for my tongue but people were walking by so fast behind me that I couldn't flag anyone down. That was so frustrating and traumatic for me. Finally, I was able to flag someone down and I asked for water and they squirted some water in my mouth a couple times, which helped.

My appointment was to finish the root canal he started last week, he couldn't do all of it because tooth was infected and he had to pack tooth with meds or something. So I was supposed to get that done and do the crown buildup.

Well, 3 hours later, all he did was finish the root canal. I asked you didn't start the crown? He said no because basically of ME and my problems (the gas took time to take effect each time it was put back on me, I needed another shot of novacaine, they had to redo the x-ray of my tooth - which I had to get up from my seat, walk with that green spandex thing in my mouth to the xray room where the office staff looked at me in amazement like I was there for entertaininment. It was so embarrassing.

And both shots doctor gave me hurt like hell. I asked him before the 2nd one if he could give me the shot with NO pain and he said all patients take pain differently. I told him that I had NEVER experienced pain from novocaine shot ever before in my life. It's not the prick of the needle that hurts, it was the bone crushing and pressure of the needle and then the medicine itself I feel going in and it's pure torture. I don't think he knows how to give shots that don't hurt. I never realized that a professoinal dentist could be so bad at giving shots.


A couple times they left me laying down in the chair for the world to see walking by behind me, mainly kids, trying to figure out what this freak show is getting down - have gas mask on my nose, green tarp and apparatus on my mouth. I felt like a freak show.

Dentist had to have them take more and more xrays of my tooth to see if he had gone all the way yet and each time they had to have me get up, walk in public to the xray room and patients and office staff could not only see me but all STARED at me like I was some freak show.

I couldn't communicate or talk clearly because of that green rubber apparatus thing and I was drooling and it was very uncomfortable. I don't think they realize that the green apparatus thing is difficult to sit up with, walk with, breathe through, and it creates mouth to salivate. I was using my bib thing to absorb the saliva.

Dentist office closed at 6pm, but I didn't get done until 7pm. After he finished the root canal, he was then going to put in the temporary filling and I asked for the nitrous oxide and he said root canal was over he was just going to put in filling now, and I said that I'd really like to have the gas. He said that I didn't need it. Granted, I know he wanted to go home and staff did too, but I KNOW I needed the gas.

And part of the temporary filling REQUIRES a drill. So I am shaking like a leaf, trying NOT to cry and am furious that he didn't let me have gas for the last TEN (10) minutes of my appointment. I am paying for the gas. But by then I had made up my mind that this man was NEVER going to treat me again - his license should be revoked and/or he should NOT be performing root canals.

He didn't know what the world he was doing. Was I their only root canal of the month? I was left alone in my chair several times for many minutes at a time while dentist performed examinations on little kids in other rooms and I was the ONLY patient in the office that was having major work done.

And he finished had me bite and feel around my tooth to make sure it feels okay and it did. So it's done. I get up and ask for mirror and I see that there is a uneven clump of filling at the bottom-left of the tooth that looked funny. I told the aide and she was like oh it'll go away. I said look it's here. She said that when I floss or brush it'll go away and it's okay. I said but it's my smile, I see it. And she told me that no one else could see it unless they are looking for it. And I looked in the mirror again and I said are you joking? She said no, it'll come off and she said it's in between the tooth so it's not permanent or thick and would easily come off.

I tried to convince her but she was like nah, it's okay. I should have asked her if SHE would go out in public with this. I mean, I AM a human being and you can't just CLUMP something on my tooth and push me out the door.

So I go to check out and I still felt uneasy about it and figured if it didn't come off tonight when I brushed/flossed, I'd come back tomorrow to have dr fix and would call that aide a ball faced liar. So the liar who's at the front desk, has me ask the cashier there if she notices, just she could prove her point.

So I ask the cashier person if the line between my front two teeth was even and she said no.

I then gave a look to kill to that lying aide. They get dentist and he wants me to get in chair and I told him, no, I want him to stand next to me looking in the mirror so I can point to exactly the problem. he does. and he gets me in chair and he files it down and then hands me a mirror and it was much better.

DUH!! How could they let me out of the chair with something like that?

Well, I look at my front tooth this morning and I see a faint gray line (filling) in the center of my front tooth and I'm worried that the tooth coloring thing he put over it wasn't enough or he filed THAT off too when he filed between my teeth and my saliva will wear it off and I'll be at the office when I smile or talk and people look at my teeth and then I take a look at it will be a 1/2 gray front tooth. So now I'm checking the mirror every 10 minutes.

I'm glad my infection is gone. I'm glad I'm in no pain. But the ENTIRE 3 hours at the dentist office yesterday was traumatic, scary, embarrassing and I don't think that ANY of the staff there have ever encountered a patient like me.

Needless to say, I am NEVER going to him again. I want to find a dentist who knows how to give a shot WITHOUT me dying of pain. Maybe the dentists I've had before weren't so bad because with them I NEVER felt the pain of a shot. Now I know what all the fear is about.

I will never get a root canal done at a general dentist office ever again. I am depressed and very down about yesterday's experience. I know it's over and I'm alive but I tried building myself up for appointment, brought headphones, thought happy thoughts, etc. But because of the uneptness of dentist and staff I couldn't really relax.

I need to get crown for this front tooth but I don't know if I can stomach going to him again. I hope this temporary filling for this crown on my front tooth stays put. I should have just had him pull the tooth like I asked last week and just give me a flipper.

Thanks for reading. Please, please, please post support. Thanks
Reading that has made me soo angry :mad:

I totally know how you feel, i had the same happen to me last year so I know how it feels to be humiliated and embarrased in front of the whole dentist's office, nurses staff and patients stared at me too. You did absolutely nothing wrong, you went in and put your trust in someone that basically didnt deserve it. I would not go back there either as they really didnt sound to me like they had a clue what was going on, that you were phobic and scared and basically had no consideration for your needs.

I guess all I can say now is dont give up, I thought I would but everyone here helped me through my bad time and I have finally found a great dentist who was so much better than the previous one I saw. We will all be here to help and support you. I am so sorry things didnt go well :grouphug: :XXLhug:
Can only second what Nat has said but also how amazing that the x-ray machine isn't in the treatment room or at least somewhere that doesn't involve you walking past loads of other patients.

I think you are one of the first US posters to mention painless shots....loads of UK folks have experienced them (including me...never had a painful one ever). Many US people seem to say dentistry is okay apart from the shots....

Good luck...yes try an endodontist next time.....hopefully there won't be a next time :p.
Well done.

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