• Dental Phobia Support

    Welcome! This is an online support group for anyone who is has a severe fear of the dentist or dental treatment. Please note that this is NOT a general dental problems or health anxiety forum! You can find a list of them here.

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Fixing a liftime of neglected teeth?



Junior member
May 24, 2016
I have always had horrible dental experiances and fear. I stopped going when I was 12. I am guilty of not brushing like I should have, flossed, eating candy and drinking soda. I have had a few teeth removed over the years after infection after infection. I am 35 years old now.
The last time I decided I wanted to address the problem I found a new dentist ans she assured me things would be different. After having her extract a few teeth and having the worst pain during the work ever I stopped going.
Well that was 3 years ago and things have gotten worse. I decided last month enough was enough and mustered the courage to go to a different dentist. They did x-rays, a cleaning and discussed a plan. Keeping and filling 2 top rear teeth on both sides and the 5 front bottom teeth, oral surgeon will put me to sleep and remove the rest that can not be saved. I went to the new dentist again yesterday to have a filling and to my surprise even the injections were very comfortable, no pain during the work. Im still terrified but that helped.
So i go in Tuesday the 31st to have the remaining teeth removed, then she wants me to heal for 4-6 months before doing partial plates. I am scared, embarssed, ashamed all at the same time. I hope I can hide from public until I get the plates, also hope my fear will keep getting better to fix and save the remaining 9 teeth I have left.
Its nice finding a group where people feel like me and a little of the shame and embarssment I feel goes away.
Yes, the shame and embarrassment turns from the state of your teeth to "Why was I afraid of this, and why did I let it rule my life?" Sounds like you have found the right dentist for you as you never should have felt anything, or been in any pain.

You have taken the first step, which is emotionally, the hardest and before you know it, will be able to talk openly with friends and family etc about it - I find the more I discuss 'going to the dentist' as a bit of normality, the cooler I am with it. Good job, though. You've got on the road to health!
Thank you. I am sure I will still be very nervous my next visit but if she keeps the work time short and pain free I will gain trust and lose fear each time. The emotional part was something I did not expect. My teeth have be bad a long time, I rarely smile but I am the type of person who does not care what others think. But the idea that most my teeth will soon be gone and replaced with :false" ones really seems to upset me! The thought of walking around 4-6 months without any teeth is nerve racking also.
Yes, 29, I just lost an old root canalled tooth which is bang in my smile line, and although I got an immediate temporary denture on the day, it's so uncomfortable I only wear it if I have to. Am saving up to pay towards the lab fees for a bridge and will be getting it ASAP (Hopefully, July). Oddly, I have zero fear now (when it comes to getting a bridge, anyway) as I'm so keen for that Jeremy Kyle Guest style gap to be gone! I do a lot of public speaking and can't face doing it with a denture (what if it flew out?) but also can't afford not to do it, and I have a huge event in July so have to get this done before then.

I thought I wouldn't care, as like you, I'm generally not bothered about how I look, too much. But it's definitely a process of mourning, as I can't afford to lose any more teeth! (Financially or vanity wise).
I have an appointment on the 31st that I am dreading too.

I just wanted to say it sounds like you blame yourself a lot, and that's not going to help. You need to let go of that. you can not change the past and really it is not your "fault" if you quit going to the dentist at 12 then it's because nobody took you. no 12 year old makes their own appointments and drives themselves to the dentist. No I am not saying blame your parents but try to let go of the guilt. you can only control what happens from now on, so no use beating yourself up about the past.
some times even doing everything right we still lose teeth...
you quit going at 12 but I never even had my first dental visit at that age. nobody ever took me as a child. My traumatic dental experiences did not start til I was already an adult.
Anyway good luck to you Tuesday, I hope all goes well for you.
Yes, I stopped going at 10 because my mother died and my dad was too overwhelmed coping with everything to take me. (And I was having impressions etc done and scheduled for some extractions that never happened, right about that time).

When my dad remarried, a couple of years later, my stepmother was quite a nasty piece of work and when she took her kids to the village dentist, didn't take me. I had a hole in the heart which meant I had to have antibiotics shot before the dentist would even look in my mouth and although I never heard what went down at the time, I now suspect my stepmother refused to 'have the responsibility' of taking me. So by the time I was 18 or so my teeth were a total mess and I'd developed this huge fear. (My last visit to the dentist had seen his wife, his anaesthetist, have an epic meltdown which I now know was because she didn't want to treat a child with a hole in the heart but I wasn't told about my heart problem til I was 15 so the woman having a fit made no sense and frightened me).

The dentist and his wife were also one of my best friend's parents. So the whole thing was embarrassing. I'd rather just not go.

At the time and for years after, my fear of the dentist made no real sense but now I recount it back like this it does, of course, make perfect sense.

If my mum had lived, I'd have gone to the dental hospital, had my treatment, then carried on like everyone else, I guess.

The things that happen to us in our childhood are nobody's fault.