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Feeling anxious and suicidal over future of my teeth and after brushing my teeth at night



Junior member
Jan 15, 2021
I am 26 years old and I can't stop worrying about my teeth. I just went back to the dentist after feeling pain in my tooth recently. In total, I needed a root canal and a total of 9 fillings. I still have 5 fillings left. Aside from monetary stress, I keep worrying about the future. I have been neglecting myself in not only oral hygiene, but also my mental health and physical health. I have high blood pressure and by BMI standards, I was obese.

I have been trying change my lifestyle recently. I have lost ~25 pounds so far in the last few months, and my current weight by BMI standards, I am now overweight, not obese. I have changed my diet to allow for more fruits/vegetables + water, cutting out all junk food/coffee. I was very bad with coffee before. At one point, I drank 5+ coffees a day and in combination of having bad oral hygiene led to my current predicament. I have slowly started adding exercise but it's been troubling. Mental health wise, I have ups and downs. I don't know how to keep it stable. Also changed my oral hygiene, so that I am brushing two times day, waterjet and flossing once a day.

I keep thinking about how I messed up and how my teeth will end up in the future. They are transparent at the bottom while being whitish-yellow. My gums were inflamed before but they seem to be normal after I started flossing and using the waterpik for three weeks. But some of my molars are a little crooked now. I read about how the fillings I got will fall out in 7-10 years and due to all the drilling and restoration, eventually my teeth will give away and I will have to either get it extracted and get dentures/implants for all my teeth. I hate myself so much. These feelings become greater after I brush my teeth, floss and waterpik at night. Because I feel so much hatred for myself and how neglectful I am and how little I know about the future. Then I start the spiral downwards thinking about how I have to die and why should I even get the rest of the fillings I have. I usually try to distract myself by watching TV until I fall asleep from exhaustion. I feel my anxiety rising as night approaches because this is the time when all these thoughts start happening. I feel worthless in the world. It's the unknown future that I fear.
Hi ARandomDude :welcome:

glad you reached out here! So many thoughts, anxieties, regret and fears about the future and this all just after you managed to move forward and start to work towards getting better! I just want to give you a hug! :friends:

You are doing a great job, I hope you know it. It's not fair to just think about the negatives. If you want to think of how far you let it go and how much you hate yourself, it would be only fair if you also realized how much you are working on yourself and what great changes have you made so far. What is with the 25 pounds that you lost? With those amazing changes in healthy habits? And the fact you're tackling your dental health too now? Your gums that are healthier now than before? Even using a waterjet!:claps:

Everyone struggles with something in their lives and the lower you are, the harder the change. It's ok to have ups and downs and fall backs and to sometimes feel down and it's also ok to regret the past. Those are things that need to get processed. Some people feel a real sense of grief about the past and that's fine too. Don't beat yourself up.

You mentioned you were neglectful. It sounds like it was all your responsibility. Yeah, it almost sounds like you did in on purpose, but did you really? So many people struggle with mental health and with all the challenges that life brings with it and if every day is a struggle, then how hard is it to take care of yourself? Monetary worries are difficult, they can really mess with your life. I remember waking up with anxiety every single day and all that was on my mind was money, or better to say the lack of it. But let me tell you, everything is temporary, even our problems. Things will settle eventually. Because they always do: once you start improving a small portion of your life, the rest will follow. I was wondering whether you have any support with this, be it a therapist, friends, family members? It sounds like so much to carry alone..

When it comes to durability of fillings and you eventually losing your teeth, I have to disappoint you. Doesn't work that way. If you keep your homecare well, your fillings can last a huge amount of time. I have read about people here on the forum who have had their fillings for decades. I myself have had a root canal tooth that has been there for 16 years now. All well. I have fillings that are even older. I also have a large filling that got replaced about 4 times, it's been there for ten years now and the tooth is doing great. Oh and this front filling that has been around for 13 years and is, sadly, still completely ok. It's a little bit stained and I would love for it to fall out or get bad so that I can replace it, but the thing sits there and won't move :) I know changing your thinking or catastrophising is not easy, but I would hate for you to worry about scenarios that are totally unprobable. You seem to know your patterns very well, which is very useful.

Last think I would like to comment on is your suicidal thoughts. What a sad place to be in and I was worried to read that you were struggling with this. Maybe you have been in touch with a suicide prevention hotline before, but in case you haven't, here is the link for the one in Canada. As in all countries, they are a kind caring bunch of people who are willing to listen to whatever bothers you. They can help you carry the weight of the worries so that they are not as heavy as if you did it alone. Also, here is the link to our article about feeling depressed or suicidal.

All the best wishes, take care and keep us posted. We're here to listen:grouphug:

Firstly well done for reaching out and being honest. You've made a huge step (well, several huge steps!) In improving your physical health and your dental health and thats a massive achievement.

You sound from your post, to be low in mood and it sounds that your teeth are something to focus that sadness on. Sometimes I think its important to try and let go of the past and the thoughts of "i should have done x, y and z" and focus on the huge changes you've made. So its hugely positive that you've changed your diet, you've improved your dental hygiene so much so that your gums are in a much better state and are less inflamed and irritated now which is really great news.

Is it an option to speak to your doctor about your thoughts and feelings? I felt very similar to you just before Xmas and my primary focus and anxiety was also my teeth. Whilst I still have big anxiety over them I am in a much better place to cope with it now. My GP prescribed me an anti depressant, Sertraline, which is helping enormously. It really might be a good idea to speak to your doctor about how you're feeling? There's lots of other options these days without going straight in for medications to relieve anxiety aswell.

Just to reassure you, fillings can actually last a lifetime. I have some which are about 20 years old and are absolutely fine. Its very difficult not to over think things or think the absolute worst in every scenario but I really found reading other stories on this forum incredibly helpful to me.
I know from experience that teeth can be stabilized. I had a lot of work in my 20s (fillings) and 30s (crowns because the fillings were big) but all I've had in 26 years now are checkups and one hole in a crown fixed. And we don't know - maybe health coverage will start covering teeth like the body part they are in the future. And you're so young that in your lifetime, who knows what they'll be able to do!!! So please, stick around. I understand future anxiety about teeth, believe me, but why not stay and see what happens?

As far as "neglect" - teeth are a really annoying body part. Other body parts heal; teeth hold a grudge. (I pay no attention to my knees and they're decent at this advanced age.)And really, I think a LOT of us with a lot of dental work just really didn't know what was ahead or we would have chosen differently.