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From scared witless to surgery scheduled!



Junior member
Oct 15, 2020
Whew, what a journey. Like many people on this forum, I had a pretty bad experience many years ago and haven’t been to a dentist in 5+ years. I was finally forced to go in due to pain on my lower right side. I made the appointment on a Friday for the following Monday and shook like a leaf the whole weekend. I was so anxious that I couldn’t eat or sleep and kept spinning out with worst case scenarios — I’m gonna gag on the xray sensor and throw up on someone, they won’t listen or stop if I’m in pain, they’re going to be judgmental and cruel, all my teeth need to come out, I won’t be able to afford whatever treatment, etc etc. All based off of this previous bad experience.

On Monday, the dentist I was scheduled to see had a personal emergency and they wanted to move my appointment to the next day. I was so relieved at the stay of execution... but it was also yet another day for me to get myself ramped up. By the time I walked in my nerves were so obvious that the receptionist said that I could walk laps in the hall if I wanted and she’d come get me.

And... turns out I had nothing to worry about. Every staff person I interacted with was kind and patient without being condescending. I got my full five year set of xrays without gagging once — instead of the big clunky machine that takes ages to position and those huge, red, sharp-edged sensor things, this office used a small, black, rounded-edged sensor and what looked like a handheld ray gun. I kid you not. I have a small mouth, lots of teeth, and a crazy gag reflex and I was completely fine! They took it seriously when I asked them for a break (because of panic, not pain luckily) and picked right back up like nothing had happened.

At the end of the day, the problem was in one of my wisdom teeth. They didn’t want to handle it in house, so they set me up with an oral surgeon who is going to knock me the heck out and get rid of all four wisdoms in one go. I have to wait two weeks for the surgery, which means two more weeks of discomfort (they did say I could call and ask for some pain meds if it gets that bad but over the counter is working well enough so far).

They also mentioned that I have moderate gum disease and that I’ll need to have my pockets measured and a deep cleaning before they know what other treatment I might need. But they knew I was stressed and instead of prolonging an already long appointment they set me up for another one. So there’s still that stressful unknown... but all in all I’m proud of myself and very relieved.


Jun 17, 2020
Wow, well done! Looks as if you‘ve found a great dental office where you can start building up some trust. The first steps have been taken - very impressive!
You have every reason to be proud of yourself!