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freaking out over upcoming extractions

MeaDrea

MeaDrea

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Joined
Jan 20, 2020
Messages
39
Location
united states
So... quick(ish) backstory. I had a really bad experience several years ago at a dentist. I had just moved, and found a dentist that could fit me in and accepted my new insurance. (I have autoimmune disease so it can attack your mouth and teeth unfortunately. So dental appointments are important.)

It was bad enough, I ended up in the hospital. I also found out later that the dentist had a poor reputation of people leaving with over packed root canals that built up too much pressure, over using the laughing gas, and spreading mouth infections through contaminated equipment.

I also suffer from an anxiety disorder, so all of this mess gave me a huge phobia of dentists and dental work, so I stopped going. I, with an autoimmune disease and already bad teeth, hadn't seen a dentist in almost 8 years. Sadly, it's my own fault that I didn't just suck it up, and now I'm dealing with bad tooth pain. I could feel a hole in one spot... and I could see decay on my lower 3rd molar (Wisdom tooth.) my face was swelling, but no one else except the doctor I went to previously that started my phobia, could get me in for a month. finally I found a dentist, but I had to pay out of pocket. Thank God for care credit.

I got a $3000 limit so he decided the best cause of action is to extract the lower and upper left wisdom teeth. The lower one is decaying and not worth saving in his opinion since the top one has to come out anyway. That one is in good shape, but it's so close to the 2nd molar where the decay is, that it's trapping bacteria because it's crowded, and that's why it's decaying so fast. Once the wisdom teeth are out, he's going to do a root canal of the 2nd molar and build it back up... then in a year when I've paid off enough to be able to afford it, I will need a crown on the 2nd molar. (What they plan on doing maxes me out.)

Knowing my severe anxiety they've opted to give me oral sedation. A pill the night before, a pill the morning of an hour before, a crushed pill mixed in a flavored drink a half hour before, then possibly gas depending on my level of sedation.

I was reading up on the types of sedation, and they said IV sedation is more appropriate for extractions, especially of wisdom teeth.

This dentist said they do not do IV. They do Oral and Gas only... and find it's not only safer, but just as successful. They also said this extraction is simple because my wisdom teeth are fully erupted and came in straight. No impaction. He said impacted wisdom teeth would likely need IV sedation with an oral surgeon. But that's not an issue here. Not to mention, they're sedating me more than a normal procedure. For a regular procedure they'd give either just gas, or a valium. For a root canal they'd do a pill the night before and the morning of. Here they're giving me 3 doses plus possible gas.

So I'm sitting here freaking out that oral sedation is not going to be enough. I'd rather be out and not remember... but then I wonder, is it TOO much medication since normally it's either a single pill or 2 pills. Then like an idiot, I've worked myself into a panic by watching videos of how an extraction works. (I had teeth pulled when I was really young because of spacing issues, but I don't remember it.)

lol I feel too old to have this phobia... but I'm hoping a dentist or someone with oral sedation experience can answer... will oral sedation be enough to get through this? I don't know if I should cancel and try to find another dentist who offers IV... I don't know if I can get my money back... (Since I'll be medicated and not allowed to consent, I had to pay ahead of time.) I'm just really concerned.
 
M

MountainMama

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Jul 1, 2018
Messages
2,063
Hello! Not a dentist, but I have had extractions with both nitrous and oral sedation. I have had four extractions in the past year, and am actually being tested for autoimmune disease, since my teeth issues seemed to come out of nowhere and all at once.
In my opinion, oral sedation helps relax you but doesn’t necessarily do much to make you “unaware”. Honestly, though, even while I was aware of what was happening, I wasn’t extremely anxious and I didn’t really remember it afterwards like I do the extractions I had as a kid that gave me the fear. Nitrous made me more dream like, so I was aware but didn’t really care what was going on. Both helped the local anesthetic work better, which was my main concern.
I have never had IV sedation, due to the expense, but I imagine being unaware of the whole thing would be pleasant.
 
BoxerMom

BoxerMom

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Jun 23, 2019
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163
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Us
Yes, seems they’re giving you a higher dose of oral sedative, but this isn’t a bad thing. They’re doing it to head off your anxiety. The oral sedation will work just fine I think. I’ve had my wisdom teeth removed years ago with no sedation and I don’t have any bad memories of it. Recently I had IV sedation to have all my teeth extracted at once. The reason they’re saying it’s safer to have the oral and gas is because IV is much more involved - there’s testing required like you’re going for an operation and they have to monitor your heart, blood pressure and breathing while you’re sedated. And I do remember pieces here and there of the extractions, so you’re not fully asleep.
 
MeaDrea

MeaDrea

Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2020
Messages
39
Location
united states
Okay that makes me feel a little better. I think my fear is more the awareness than any pain... but they will be numbing eveything so maybe I'll do okay... it just really stinks lol

Mostly the unknown. I wish they could just get it over with. Ugh

My teeth are miserable, but so is the anxiety of the procedure.

But if y'all did it without trauma... I can too. i think
 
MeaDrea

MeaDrea

Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2020
Messages
39
Location
united states
I wish I could kick my anxiety of dentists. Any other anti anxiety suggestions?
 
S

Scared all the time

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Joined
Jan 21, 2019
Messages
331
Location
NJ
I wish I could kick my anxiety of dentists. Any other anti anxiety suggestions?
For me my anxiety stretches past dental fear to fear of everything it seems. Just anxious all the time it seems. Never use to have it I’ve finally scheduled with a therapist to see if that helps. Anxiety and fear is awful and life consuming I just can’t stand it anymore. I hope a therapist helps me. I guess I’ll find out soon
 
krlovesherkids777

krlovesherkids777

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Jul 26, 2017
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Minneapolis, MN
Scaredallthetime,

That is really awesome you have scheduled with a therapist. I've been in therapy for a few years and really found it soo empowering and helpful and has given me the tools to get through some really anxious times. I hope your therapist is really helpful!!
 
S

Scared all the time

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 21, 2019
Messages
331
Location
NJ
Scaredallthetime,

That is really awesome you have scheduled with a therapist. I've been in therapy for a few years and really found it soo empowering and helpful and has given me the tools to get through some really anxious times. I hope your therapist is really helpful!!
Thank you! at first I was afraid to even schedule an appointment but now I’m looking forward to it believe it or not. a person shouldn’t have to go through life this way it’s just not living life, I hope it helps.
 
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