Eyes open or shut?

During dental treatment, do you prefer to keep your eyes open or closed?

  • Eyes open

    Votes: 57 31.0%
  • Eyes closed

    Votes: 111 60.3%
  • Don't mind/don't know/depends

    Votes: 16 8.7%

  • Total voters
    184
FearfulInMA

FearfulInMA

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#81
I always keep them shut. I find it easier to pretend I'm somewhere else with them shut. Also, even with my eyes shut, my current dentist has always been very good about including me in the conversation and also about noticing when I'm in any discomfort.
 
Kim

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#82
Years and years ago I used to stare at the lamp post outside the window all the time - recent treatment was done with iv sedation, so eyes wide shut for me on that one ;)
 
K

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#83
Eyes shut and not opened until they're putting the chair back upright! With eyes closed, noise-cancelling headphones in, a blanket, and nitrous it's easy to doze off and be out of it... which is much less agonizing than being in the moment, so to speak
 
I

iDent

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#84
Eyes CLOSED!

Although I am in some ways a "control freak," I definitely keep my eyes closed for several reasons:

1.) I am sensory hypersensitive, especially regarding fluorescent and other bright lights. Since dental operatories have both fluorescent overheads and bright procedure lights, as well as the dental loupes with worklights that most dentists now wear, it's easier for me to keep my eyes closed.

2.) As a child, I learned that dental work was easier if I didn't have to squint under bright lights and, more importantly, didn't have to see drills and other tools coming at me. I advocate an eyes-closed approach and so does my dentist, so closed they stay!

3.) Due to a long history of strabismus, my eyes are slightly misaligned and tend to become even more so when I am sleep-deprived, physically ill, or under stress. If a dental staff member saw me with one eye more fixed or wandering than usual, they might become concerned that I was in more distress than I actually was.
 
Sparkles

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#85
I used to be very much in favour of keeping my eyes firmly shut with a terrible fear of opening them and seeing all the instruments of torture coming at me. :o

Now however, Mike has got me to the stage of keeping my eyes open. I've managed to watch the needles (which aren't 6ft spears after all) and he takes time to explain what each of the tools he's going to use do and what they sound like, feel like, so I don't get a fright.

So it's eye's open from now on. :jump:

I should probably admit that i can very easily have my eyes open and see nothing at all as I can completely dissociate. But Mike makes sure i'm very much 'in the room' he seems to know when i'm disappearing in to my head....not sure how, I must ask him that. :hmm:
 
coolin

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#86
Yes Sparkles the needles are tiny aren't they! I asked to see one last week and was quite shocked to see how small it actually was. I imagined it was the size of the ones used to take blood but its about a third the size of that and much thinner.
I'm eyes open. In my phobic days I used to stare at the light - the brand name was Daray - it is burned in my memory and probably the back of my eyes too.
In my current non phobic state I still keep my eyes open but I have no idea of the brand name of the light :) I'm just interested in what is going on....I do try not to make eye contact though - that would be a little strange.....:redface:
 
Sparkles

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#87
I don't like making eye contact either coolin. I wonder why that is though. :confused: I don't know but if I catch his eye I start to blush immediately. mmm..:redface:
 
kitkat

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#88
I used to be very much in favour of keeping my eyes firmly shut with a terrible fear of opening them and seeing all the instruments of torture coming at me. :o

Now however, Mike has got me to the stage of keeping my eyes open. I've managed to watch the needles (which aren't 6ft spears after all) and he takes time to explain what each of the tools he's going to use do and what they sound like, feel like, so I don't get a fright.

So it's eye's open from now on. :jump:

I should probably admit that i can very easily have my eyes open and see nothing at all as I can completely dissociate. But Mike makes sure i'm very much 'in the room' he seems to know when i'm disappearing in to my head....not sure how, I must ask him that. :hmm:
I also went from eyes open to eyes shut after the dental staff made more of an effort to interact with me and include me. Now it would feel weird to shut my eyes because it is not normal to shut your eyes during a conversation with someone...even if it is pretty one-sided! I do make eye contact occasionally. I find it reassuring to be acknowledged even if she is talking to me throughout but tend to avert my gaze to one corner of the room or another during actual work. Sometimes, I end up looking towards the assistant. When I used to be very anxious I would subconsciously end up turning my whole head away from the dentist toward the assistant and she'd have to gently guide me back in her direction to do any work!:giggle:

My dentist can also read my mind and sense when I'm getting overwhelmed or predict when I might be startled by something. She's very sensitive to my comfort level and mental state and I think that may be because she started as a dental assistant and probably spent a lot of time observing people during treatment.
 
Last edited:
carole

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#89
I don't know if I should ask this but here goes, how long is the needle then in cm's, no pic's. I don't want to see I just wondered. I think a blood one that is used in the arm is about 2" isn't it, I don't usually look at them either. I would move if I did. They don't scare me in the arm but the dentist one is not so good, even though my last ones were totally pain free, I am beginning to think that I am making mountains out of molehills with the size of the dental tools.:butterfly:
 
Sparkles

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#90
Carole I have just been and measured the needle that mike sent me home to practice looking at. It is 1/2 an inch and very very thin. Much thinner than the ones they use for bloods in your arm.

Hope that helps a bit. :)

Sorry just noticed you asked for measurement in cm not inches!! It is 1.3cm.
 
carole

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#91
Thank you Sparkles, are you well.

Half an inch, bloomin' heck I had to ask :ROFLMAO: It is smaller than I thought. So it is about the size of a thumb nail then, not a long one, because it is about an inch from your thumb joint to the tip.

Not as big as I thought it was, I will still shut my eyes, I don't trust myself not to back off if I see it coming my way :ROFLMAO: even though I know they don't hurt if done properly.
 
Sparkles

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#92
I'm quite impressed with myself that I managed to go and find my practice needle and measure it! I would never have imagined being able to hold one let alone look closely enough at one to measure it. :ROFLMAO:

Go me!! :giggle: Mike will be very impressed.
 
carole

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#93
I'm impressed with you, yes GO YOU!!!!!!!!!!! :cheer::butterfly:
 
krlovesherkids777

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#95
I'm w Mims I alternate I especially try to close during anesthetic shot and some other times but also like to know what's going on too