- Mar 27, 2023
- New York
I have been in a world of a mess with my teeth, keeping it a secret from everyone that I haven't visited the dentist in 14 years. Some kind of kick-in-the-a$$ intervention from the universe stepped in last weekend, and now I have my first appointment tomorrow. Gradually over the last several years, I have noticed my teeth getting yellower and visible spots of plaque showing up on them. In the last few months, I noticed one of my molars was tender at times when I brushed it. Otherwise I haven't been in any pain or discomfort. I started to smile less due to the embarrassment and started talking in a way where I was trying to hide my teeth. I hated being outdoors with others, fearing they might notice how gross my teeth looked. I stopped smiling with exposed teeth in pictures. How did I get here?: Since my last cleaning all those years ago, I went off my parent's health insurance and didn't have dental coverage. With student loans to pay, I couldn't afford the cost of cleaning. Then, as the years went on, I started to become so full of shame for not going for cleanings, that this prevented me even further from seeing a dentist. I just felt so embarrassed, full of regret, and didn't want to get "in trouble" with a dentist. So I neglected it and put it out of my mind. Now at present day: Last weekend one of the veneers on one of my front teeth popped off while eating. It doesn't appear to be broken, and fortunately I didn't swallow it. These veneers are 16-years-old, so I don't know if they will need to be replaced or the one that fell off can be reattached. Knowing I couldn't hide from these issues any longer, I am being forced to finally see a dentist. This morning I contacted a dental practice many of my friends go to. I sent them an email breaking down all my issues. They got back to me in 20 minutes with the nicest response that was encouraging. They said that they will address the veneer first tomorrow since it's more urgent (i currently have dental wax on it, and it's hard to eat). Then I will get xrays and a cleaning on Wednesday that they scheduled extra time for. I have spent time crying and panicking imagining someone actually looking inside my mouth, but I no longer have a choice. I know this will be way better in the long run. This is the hardest step. But I'm worried about all that they will find. I wouldn't be surprised if I set a record for most cavities, if I need an extraction and then an implant. Need new veneers. Got knows what else. I've been spiraling. Discovering this website and reading the stories of others has helped me get through the day. Thanks to everyone who has shared their story. I hope mine can help others and will update this when I have more to share.