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Going to schedule dentist appt tomorrow for first time in 7 years, have multiple issues with teeth, terrified

C

Cody

Junior member
Joined
Aug 31, 2019
Messages
15
Location
Washington
So I’m 26 and haven’t been to a dentist in 7 years, maybe a bit longer, but recent events have kinda shaken me awake to the cold reality that I need to see a dentist no matter how afraid I am.
About 6 months ago I started getting extreme sensitivity in my front right tooth upon drinking and even just touching it, this eventually faded slightly, but then some months later I started feeling a throbbing pain in the tooth, and long story short, it died. I’m positive it’s non vital as I feel nothing when touching an ice cube to it, and to further cement that it’s dead, a few weeks ago I noticed a gum type boil above the tooth on the gum line. Upon seeing this I immediately panicked as I knew it was an abscess and had read that it will not go away on it’s own as long as the dead tooth remained untreated. So I need either a root canal or an extraction and both terrify me to death. Not only that but after years of barely brushing my teeth they are yellow and cavities are everywhere I’m sure and I’m extremely ashamed at having such poor teeth at such a young age and so this shame and fear of what the dentist will think/find in my mouth is what has kept me from seeing a dentist. so I made a plan, I decided to put off seeing a dentist until my dead tooth abscess situation was absolutely life threatening which is foolish I know, but it shows the level of my fear. Well something just happened about an hour ago that has made me put my foot down and say screw it, I’m making an appointment. I felt something loose so I felt around with my tongue and when I did a piece of the dead tooth fell right out. I developed a crack in the tooth many years ago and I never payed it much mind, but now I think with the tooth being dead, it made this crack even worse and it just came off so now 1/3 of my front tooth is missing and there’s a gap in between my front teeth now and I feel horrible and depressed as now I’m unsure if this will change the way my dead tooth will be treated. Will they just want to pull it? 70% of it is still there, so I wonder if doing a root canal and then bonding and crowning it is still an option. I’m extremely nervous about the appointment and any advice or insight on what procedures I may expect would be appreciated and anything to ease my worry as well. 😀
 
BoxerMom

BoxerMom

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 23, 2019
Messages
159
Location
Us
Hi Cody!
While I can’t offer you advice on whether your tooth can be saved or not, I can tell you that you won’t be the worst the dentist has seen, believe me! Being that you’re so young, I’m sure they will do what they can to save the tooth if possible. Please discuss any fears or anxiety you have when you call, that way they know up front that you’re nervous and scared. Don’t be afraid to speak up and let them know what’s going through your mind. Wishing you good luck!
 
C

Cody

Junior member
Joined
Aug 31, 2019
Messages
15
Location
Washington
Thank you for the quick response! It is comforting knowing it won’t be the worst they’ve seen. I’ll be sure to explain my situation as I don’t want to be treated like any other patient who is totally fine laying back opening up and letting them have at it lol. I’ll keep you and that cute boxer in mind for comfort. Will post back with updates after appointment.
 
Enarete

Enarete

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Sep 18, 2017
Messages
2,521
Hi Cody :welcome:,

it sounds like you are very determinated to schedule now that the tooth chipped. It is not unusual for dead teeth to break at one point or another, but if there is enough of the tooth left, it should be possible for it to be saved, so try not to think of an extraction before you got a professional opinion.
Shame is a huge one, you might have seen our page in the common fears about this, it is in fact the most visited site here on the forum, so you probably can imagine that being embarrassed about teeth is what worries most of the people who haven‘t seen a dentist for a while. Anyway, the only thing that counts is that you are ready to move forward now and get things rolling, so give yourself a pat on the back for it.
Have you looked up practices already? Was there any that you feel might be compassionate and able to help you with your fear?

All the best wishes
 
C

Cody

Junior member
Joined
Aug 31, 2019
Messages
15
Location
Washington
Hi Cody :welcome:,

it sounds like you are very determinated to schedule now that the tooth chipped. It is not unusual for dead teeth to break at one point or another, but if there is enough of the tooth left, it should be possible for it to be saved, so try not to think of an extraction before you got a professional opinion.
Shame is a huge one, you might have seen our page in the common fears about this, it is in fact the most visited site here on the forum, so you probably can imagine that being embarrassed about teeth is what worries most of the people who haven‘t seen a dentist for a while. Anyway, the only thing that counts is that you are ready to move forward now and get things rolling, so give yourself a pat on the back for it.
Have you looked up practices already? Was there any that you feel might be compassionate and able to help you with your fear?

All the best wishes
Hi thanks for the response, your reply has helped me feel more at ease about the whole thing especially the part about it being common for dead teeth to break.So basically the amount of tooth left is 70 -80% or so. The tooth is it’s normal length, but it’s just now about 20% less wide, looks like someone tore a strip off of it length wise which has caused there to be a gap in between the two front teeth and it feels so so weird lol but now I am hopeful it can be saved with root canal and crown. Anyways yes I actually have my dad scheduling me an appointment with his dentist who he says is really chill and a really good dentist. The tough thing I still am struggling with is the explanation on why my teeth are the way they are. Though I’m sure this dentist won’t press me too much on it, it’s hard to explain to someone why you have hardly brushed your teeth and heck I don’t even fully know the answer to that. I suppose I’m lazy, but mostly I took the health of my once pearly white teeth for granted and every time I would think I better brush my teeth,something in my head would kick in and say “ well it’s not like your teeth are going to just rot out right now and fall out if you don’t brush your teeth right this instance, it can wait till later” and then later comes and turns into tomorrow and then into next week and so on and next thing you know here I am with bad teeth on a forum trying to find courage and strength to see a dentist lol. Anyways thank you very much for the help, will post an update soon!
 
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thisisme

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2012
Messages
245
Aw, Cody. So many people on this forum have been in this situation. You have come to the right place! I’m so proud of you for taking the first step. The first call/appointment is so hard, but it does get easier.

Try not to worry too much about what they’ll say and think. They are professionals and have seen much much worse. If it’s a good practice, they will focus on the present and future to get your mouth healthy.

I believe in you. Stay strong!
 
Dg6300

Dg6300

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 27, 2017
Messages
637
Location
US
Good luck!

I don’t have any advice, but I do send encouragement.
 
C

Cody

Junior member
Joined
Aug 31, 2019
Messages
15
Location
Washington
Aw, Cody. So many people on this forum have been in this situation. You have come to the right place! I’m so proud of you for taking the first step. The first call/appointment is so hard, but it does get easier.

Try not to worry too much about what they’ll say and think. They are professionals and have seen much much worse. If it’s a good practice, they will focus on the present and future to get your mouth healthy.

I believe in you. Stay strong!
Thank you very much! You are all so kind and helpful. Even though it’s not logical, I felt like I was alone in all of this but have quickly realized I am not. Thanks to everyone I found the courage to pick up the phone and make the call and it was hard. My heart was pounding and hands trembling a little bit and I actually hung up the first time because I was expecting an instant pickup, but it rang three times and those few extra rings gave my mind a chance to back out lol. I did call again and scheduled my appointment for next week. It feels like a weight has been lifted and I feel proud but I know that when the dreaded appointment day comes I’m going to be doing battle with my mind once again and it will try and conjure up every excuse not to go but I’m going to overcome it this time. Thanks again, will post an update next week 😀
 
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thisisme

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 17, 2012
Messages
245
Thank you very much! You are all so kind and helpful. Even though it’s not logical, I felt like I was alone in all of this but have quickly realized I am not. Thanks to everyone I found the courage to pick up the phone and make the call and it was hard. My heart was pounding and hands trembling a little bit and I actually hung up the first time because I was expecting an instant pickup, but it rang three times and those few extra rings gave my mind a chance to back out lol. I did call again and scheduled my appointment for next week. It feels like a weight has been lifted and I feel proud but I know that when the dreaded appointment day comes I’m going to be doing battle with my mind once again and it will try and conjure up every excuse not to go but I’m going to overcome it this time. Thanks again, will post an update next week 😀
That first call is so hard! I remember fighting back tears and getting through the lump in my throat. I made my first call on July 31st and had my appointment Aug. 1. The call really is the hardest. It’s true. Next week will be tough, but you are going to get through it. I always remind myself when I’m leaving for a dentist appointment that I’m not going to die. That helps me a lot. I still have three more appointments to catch up (1 wisdom tooth extraction, 2 cavities left, 2 cavities/2 replacement fillings right) and I’m mostly caught up after 16 years of avoidance! I encourage you to go through the Success Stories on here. They always help me! You got this. Congrats on making the appointment (that’s huge!) and let us know how it goes!
 
C

Cody

Junior member
Joined
Aug 31, 2019
Messages
15
Location
Washington
That first call is so hard! I remember fighting back tears and getting through the lump in my throat. I made my first call on July 31st and had my appointment Aug. 1. The call really is the hardest. It’s true. Next week will be tough, but you are going to get through it. I always remind myself when I’m leaving for a dentist appointment that I’m not going to die. That helps me a lot. I still have three more appointments to catch up (1 wisdom tooth extraction, 2 cavities left, 2 cavities/2 replacement fillings right) and I’m mostly caught up after 16 years of avoidance! I encourage you to go through the Success Stories on here. They always help me! You got this. Congrats on making the appointment (that’s huge!) and let us know how it goes!
Wow seems like you’ve been through a lot! You’re right, even thinking “I’m not going to die” right now is calming me. It’s true, regardless of what happens I will be walking out of there. Having to go to the dentist can certainly feel like it’s the end of the world. The mind is a powerful thing and can turn something into a mountain when in reality it’s just a speed bump. Good luck on your next three appointments 😀 I definitely will check out those success stories.
 
M

maranti19

Junior member
Joined
Jul 21, 2019
Messages
11
Location
USA
First off, I commend you for taking the steps to address this issue! This community is so supportive and helpful, you're definitely in a good place :)

It's also a great reminder that you are NOT alone! I was in a similar situation to you about 2 months ago, and looking back at the process the best advice I have for you is to be comfortable and confident with your dentist. For me, that meant reading reviews from their patients, scheduling a consultation to get to know them, and familiarizing myself with their office.

I had the same concern as you - that it was really bad, maybe the worst they'd ever seen, I was ashamed, embarrassed, and a ball of tears the first time I stepped foot in the door. By telling the dentist that, we were able to work through things together and devise a plan that worked for ME, which I had never had a dentist do before.

Do your best to be gentle on yourself and find a professional that supports you, and please keep coming back to the forum if it's helpful to you! Best of luck, and I know you'll do fantastic :)
 
M

MountainMama

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Joined
Jul 1, 2018
Messages
2,041
Like others have said, don't feel ashamed. The dentists will have seen worse and will be glad that you came in to get help now, rather than later.
As far as the front tooth, I chipped my front tooth badly when I was a kid. The dentist put a filling on it to fix the chip. My tooth slowly died over the years. I had no idea, as there was no pain. Last year it became painful to bite. It put it off for a few weeks, but when I was in for another issue I mentioned the tooth. They took an x ray and I had a huge abscess!
I had a root canal, and was going to get a crown, but due to my abscess being so large, the infection kept coming back. I ended up having it extracted today, actually, and had bone grafting and an implant put in. I have a temporary flipper in right now.
I absolutely hate dental procedures, and have been terrified of them since I was a kid. Neither procedure was as bad as I had expected. I did use nitroud oxide to help relax me.
So know that many of us have been where you are now. You can do it!
 
C

Cody

Junior member
Joined
Aug 31, 2019
Messages
15
Location
Washington
Like others have said, don't feel ashamed. The dentists will have seen worse and will be glad that you came in to get help now, rather than later.
As far as the front tooth, I chipped my front tooth badly when I was a kid. The dentist put a filling on it to fix the chip. My tooth slowly died over the years. I had no idea, as there was no pain. Last year it became painful to bite. It put it off for a few weeks, but when I was in for another issue I mentioned the tooth. They took an x ray and I had a huge abscess!
I had a root canal, and was going to get a crown, but due to my abscess being so large, the infection kept coming back. I ended up having it extracted today, actually, and had bone grafting and an implant put in. I have a temporary flipper in right now.
I absolutely hate dental procedures, and have been terrified of them since I was a kid. Neither procedure was as bad as I had expected. I did use nitroud oxide to help relax me.
So know that many of us have been where you are now. You can do it!
Your situation is very similar to mine! Thanks for the response, the procedures not being as bad as you expected is great to hear and music to my ears 😀 My tooth first became very sensitive to everything even just touching it with my finger, then that subsided a bit and then a few months later I noticed it hurt to bite into things which was very scary to go through. Then not long after I had a throbbing pain in the tooth, like I could feel my heart beat through it and I now know that was the pulp dying. Then about a week later I noticed a bump above the tooth that was swollen and realized I had an abscess and the tooth was dead. It’s pretty scary when you’re afraid of the dentist and then you go online and read that the only two options for a dead tooth are a root canal or extraction and to further scare you, you read how the infection can spread and even kill you. So did you even realize your tooth had an abscess? The bump on my gums isn’t very big and it even drains on it’s own sometimes, I’m hoping a root canal is still an option for me. I’ve had this abscess in my mouth for about 3 weeks now.
 
C

Cody

Junior member
Joined
Aug 31, 2019
Messages
15
Location
Washington
Like others have said, don't feel ashamed. The dentists will have seen worse and will be glad that you came in to get help now, rather than later.
As far as the front tooth, I chipped my front tooth badly when I was a kid. The dentist put a filling on it to fix the chip. My tooth slowly died over the years. I had no idea, as there was no pain. Last year it became painful to bite. It put it off for a few weeks, but when I was in for another issue I mentioned the tooth. They took an x ray and I had a huge abscess!
I had a root canal, and was going to get a crown, but due to my abscess being so large, the infection kept coming back. I ended up having it extracted today, actually, and had bone grafting and an implant put in. I have a temporary flipper in right now.
I absolutely hate dental procedures, and have been terrified of them since I was a kid. Neither procedure was as bad as I had expected. I did use nitroud oxide to help relax me.
So know that many of us have been where you are now. You can do it!
I do have one question, how did the nitrous oxide feel? Is it similar to taking something like Xanax and you just don’t care? Or does it make you feel sleepy? I might ask for some if it comes to it but the thought of taking it worries me just because I don’t know what it feels like.
 
C

Cody

Junior member
Joined
Aug 31, 2019
Messages
15
Location
Washington
So an update, it turns out my dentist had some cancellations and the receptionist called me and told me due to the nature of me having an abscess from the dead tooth, the sooner they can see me the better and asked if I wanted to come in tomorrow instead of next week. I accepted, so I’ll be going into the dentist tomorrow at 2:45 for the first time in 7 years. My anxiety hasn’t been too bad as I thought I had a week to go, but now knowing my appointment is a mere 17 hours away is daunting lol. In a way I’m glad because I just want to get it over with. Anyways thank you everyone for your kind, non judgmental words and advice and I’ll be thinking about you all tomorrow when I’m in that chair and it will bring me great comfort. Will update how it went tomorrow!
 
P

patient

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 7, 2014
Messages
219
Cody if you have a dentist like mine they will not judge you. Good luck
 
A

amicx92

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Aug 24, 2019
Messages
17
Location
US
Good luck! I’m glad you’re getting it taken care of. I had an infection on an old root canal tooth that went unnoticed for about a month because they were misdiagnosing it as my TMJ issues, and my face SWELLED.

I’m your age, so for me, I felt like I was too young to be going through the issues that I’m going through. But I’m trying to accept that it’s something that just happens that’s out of my control, but I can control what happens now. I have to get the tooth extracted, and even though implants are preferred, I CHOSE to get a bridge because the teeth around it need crowns and I didn’t feel comfortable with that procedure right now. Reminding myself I have choices and that I’m in control has helped me through this process, so that might be something that can help you, too!

I’ll be thinking about you! Good luck.
 
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