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"I love my dentist" (was: "I hate dentists")

brit

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Re: "I hate dentists"

I think this thread is so amusing Michelle, no you are not the only one - I used to 'lurve' *:-* my dentist when I was 14! (Admittedly a long time ago!) *Funny thing is, the nicer/the more painless they are, the more fanciable they seem, regardless of true level of physical beauty.

I actually think it's probably quite a good distraction technique and is just as 'safe' as having a crush on a pop or movie star. Obviously as a heterosexual only works for me with male dentists though and they have to be likeable or there's no chance of it working - stress of the situation gets in the way too much. *For years I'd feel nervous in the waiting room but as soon as I went in - provided I was greeted well - the nerves would just instantly fall away regardless of what I was having done.

My Dad used to hate going to the dentist until he got a female one - so you're not telling me sexual attraction doesn't factor in there somewhere on occasions.

Feel sure dentists must be aware of this???? but obviously yes you'd die of embarassment if you felt they knew for sure. *

Doing your best *to fancy your dentist (as a distraction technique) is much more fun than worrying about where to put your handbag but I can relate to that too. Obviously it wouldn't work for those at the beginning of overcoming dental phobia - and I'll understand if you think I'm mad/warped.
 
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kitkat

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Re: "I hate dentists"

vicki(Guest) said:
Another thing to consider is that answers given can depend on the question that is asked or the way in which it's asked. For example, at my last appointment I was greeted with "Hi, How are you doing?" (or something similar - can't remember exactly - it's a scary blur!). My inner voice was saying something along the lines of "oh my god, I'm so terrified that it's taking every ounce of my strength not to have a panic attack right here, right now..." but the answer I actually gave was "OK". If a different question had been asked such as "Are you nervous?", I might have answered "Yes".

Complicated stuff really.... :(
Vicki brings up a great point there! And I can validate her reasoning because from my own experience when I was asked "Hi! how are you doing?" (at pretty much every appointment) I responded with "Good" even though I was a nervous wreck and at a more recent appointment I was asked "Are you nervous?" and I responded "Yes" which I would never bring up on my own yet could say in a response to the question, (still confused as to what the difference is, being that either way I'm still saying the same thing! lol) so a lot of it does depend on the question and how it is asked in getting feedback on the patients attitude towards the treatment. There has got to be some sort of psychology involved in that somewhere? ... well that's my two cents!
Cheers :cheers:
 
letsconnect

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Re: "I hate dentists"

I suppose the reason why they don't normally ask "Are you nervous?" is that the question suggests that there must be a *reason* to be nervous, lol ;). So a question like that could easily backfire... Also, a lot of dentists collect their patients in the waiting room, and asking "Are you nervous?" in front of everyone could prove hugely embarrassing :D.
I can see though that most people when asked "How are you doing?" would automatically answer "fine" or something along those lines...
 
kitkat

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Re: "I hate dentists"

letsconnect said:
I suppose the reason why they don't normally ask "Are you nervous?" is that the question suggests that there must be a *reason* to be nervous, lol ;). So a question like that could easily backfire... Also, a lot of dentists collect their patients in the waiting room, and asking "Are you nervous?" in front of everyone could prove hugely embarrassing :D.
I can see though that most people when asked "How are you doing?" would automatically answer "fine" or something along those lines...
True, true. I suppose they shouldn't pose the question unless they are pretty sure that the answer is yes lol. It's interesting that you brought that up about the waiting room because normally the assistants collect the patients at the practice I go to but that day the dentist did herself, but she held off till I was in the chair, shaking incessantly before she popped the question so it was very confidential... which is the best way to go about it :D.

So in the proper atmosphere and under the right circumstances the question would work but it must be used with extreme caution. Otherwise like you said a backfire could occur making matters worse.

But it's definantly not a very good ice breaker question ...for that they should just stick to the "how are you?" and then a bit later they can pose the nervous one if it's called for.
 
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Re: "I hate dentists"

My dentist always walks in the room saying "hello, how are you?" and I always reply O.K., even when I am nervous, which is always. He has become very perceptive to my nerves though lol. Once when he needed to do surgery on a tooth, after he numbed me up, he asked if I was comfortable with the procedure he was going to do. I must have given a look (or it was my uncontrollable shaking) he said with a smile "well not comfortable, I know you are nervous, but do you understand what I am going to do? Do you have any questions?" I couldn't ask any questions (due to nerves) then either, but I felt much better know that he was aware that I was scared.

I really wish there was a question they could ask that made it impossible to answer Yes, fine, or OK to. lol Although I would probably figure out another one word answer to reply with.
 
kitkat

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Re: "I hate dentists"

freakout said:
He has become very perceptive to my nerves though lol. I couldn't ask any questions (due to nerves) then either, but I felt much better know that he was aware that I was scared.
My dentist sounds quite similar to yours with being perceptive and upfront about addressing the anxiety. At first I had decided that this was not a good thing as for some strange reason I had believed that something really horrible would happen if I had been found out, but afterwards like you I actually was more relieved. But I'm sure the reaction from the dentist towards the fear was a big contributer to that relief because had she been unsympathetic to it or made it into a big deal I probably would have killed over on the spot lol. Although normally she addresses it as we go just taking one thing at a time rather than trying to get it all out in the open at once which is good since my reactions change at every appt :D. She usually just catches it in the act and begins to gradually counteract it before it can work it's way up to a full panic. Although it's kinda strange to see how her attitude shifts once she realizes...I'm not sure if other people notice this but I've seen mine take a whole shift in mood when she notices what's going on and suddenly changes her tone of voice to a more soothing one and switches into a whole overall "gentler mode."
Quite odd in my opinion but it helps.

I really wish there was a question they could ask that made it impossible to answer Yes, fine, or OK to. lol Although I would probably figure out another one word answer to reply with.
Hmm...I wonder if when they asked "How are you?" and you replied "No" they might get the point without you having to say that you are nervous? LOL. Just a thought ;)
 
vicki

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Re: "I hate dentists"

kitkat said:
My dentist sounds quite similar to yours with being perceptive and upfront about addressing the anxiety. At first I had decided that this was not a good thing as for some strange reason I had believed that something really horrible would happen if I had been found out, but afterwards like you I actually was more relieved.
Me too - I was (and still am) completely convinced that something awful would happen if I got found out - hence the lengths I go to in order to try and cover it up :(. But after over 20 years of trying to hide it (and perfecting my acting skills in the process ;) ), it hasn't actually got me anywhere really.

I haven't got to the 'finding out' stage yet as that's something I'll have to face at the next visit (and quite frankly I'd rather rip my toenails off whilst jumping over a cliff without a parachute than go to the next appointment).

Perceptiveness seems to vary greatly though (in my limited experience so far!) so I guess it's a case of suck it and see...

kitkat said:
Hmm...I wonder if when they asked "How are you?" and you replied "No" they might get the point without you having to say that you are nervous? LOL. Just a thought ;)
Not sure... I usually get asked this every time I go and my usual answer is "Errrr..... (long pause!) errrrr...." because I always say OK as well but I know that if I keep on saying that when it quite obviously isn't the case, then it won't do me any good. No matter how hard I try though I can't get past "Errrr" so he just usually moves onto the next question.
 
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Re: "I hate dentists"

Hi...Actually that last part "No" reminded me of my first return visist, after working through my phobia on this site. I was supposed to go back, however, financially I couldn't afford to for about a month, that turned into about 9 months. Well when I did go back, my dentist asked if I missed him? My quick reply was an emphatic NO! Then we discussed what I needed done. When he came in to numb me up, I was shaking like a leaf (so bad that the next day my shoulders were sore). He took one look and said "Oh you did miss me, I can tell!" I just replied, "Yes it only took me nine months to make an appointment". He just smiled and said "I know" I could tell he understood about my nerves and felt much better about it. Go figure one of my biggest fears was shaking uncontrollably, however when that happened, he was aware I was scared and made me feel much better about it :)
 
kitkat

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Re: "I hate dentists"

freakout said:
Well when I did go back, my dentist asked if I missed him? My quick reply was an emphatic NO!
That sounds like me lol I bet they get that a lot in their profession. Poor dentists...nobody ever WANTS to see them. I once heard somewhere that Dentists have the highest suicide rate out of any profession which is quite plausible considering that none of their clients come to see them happily. Or most of them don't anyway. It's really one of the few professions that I can think of where the clients dread seeing you or are even possibly completely terrified of you.

I could tell he understood about my nerves and felt much better about it. Go figure one of my biggest fears was shaking uncontrollably, however when that happened, he was aware I was scared and made me feel much better about it :)
That's one of my biggest fears too! That's also what gave me away :rolleyes: Except I started to shake like a leaf before the drilling came and did fine through the injection. I think I was suppressing through the injection though and then my lips went numb and I lost control of them and they started quivering really bad and trying to be casual about it she was like "your lip's fluttering quite a bit here, are you nervous?" and at that point some independent part of me, I literally had no control over my speaking abilities just said "Yes!" :o Even I surprised myself with that one!!! lol It's crazy the way nerves can bring the truth out! Adrenaline can be dangerous stuff, you just start speaking your mind uncontrollably LOL At that point though I was quite relieved that I was able to finally tell her straight out and was recieved well. The tension seems to ease out faster knowing that they are aware cause you don't have the added stress of holding back as much and trying to "seem fine."
 
kitkat

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Re: "I hate dentists"

vicki said:
Me too - I was (and still am) completely convinced that something awful would happen if I got found out - hence the lengths I go to in order to try and cover it up :(. But after over 20 years of trying to hide it (and perfecting my acting skills in the process ;) ), it hasn't actually got me anywhere really.
I know how that is, my dentist already knows and I still take drastic measures to try to cover it up anyway figuring we can start over again but she always sees through the disguise the minute the chair goes back :confused:
I thought I had perfected this acting skill as well but either I'm getting worse or dental professionals are getting very perceptive these days cause as time progresses I seem to be easier and easier to detect lol.

I haven't got to the 'finding out' stage yet as that's something I'll have to face at the next visit (and quite frankly I'd rather rip my toenails off whilst jumping over a cliff without a parachute than go to the next appointment).
I think when I start getting very close, say 2 days prior, I feel that way no matter what is going to be done at the next appt. My mom was really cruel one time about a year and a half ago when I started researching this fear, I had already cancelled a filling appt cause it was my first one in about 10 years and was too scared to go through with it, and she went and rescheduled my appt and didn't tell me till an hour before I had to go so I couldn't get out of it! :scared: :o :sick: I could've killed her! :( I couldn't believe she did that! I nearly had a heart attack upon hearing the news !!! I think my eyes leapt from my head lol! We were just sitting there watching tv and a nice serene moment suddenly jumped to horror and she was like "You have a dentist appt!" and I was like "I do?! :o" and she was like "Your getting a filling!" and I was like "I AM?!!?!?!?!?!" :scared: :o :scared: :( TRADER! At the time I really was wishing for that alternate route you offered in place of what I was about to do.

At least it wasn't as awful as I had thought it would be. Sending you positive thoughts and lots of luck for your next appt :XXLhug:.
 
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Re: "I hate dentists"

I think I would have wanted to strangle my mother if she did that :scared: My parents just nagged and nagged and nagged again until I finally gave in and went back to the dentist. I even screamed at my dad after he yelled at me for not making an appointment, telling I was going to lose all my teeth. Needless to say I have never talked about my phobia to him. When I finally went back and needed an extraction, I got the I told you so look, but he didn't dare say anything.

I have to have a cleaning in a few weeks, I think what freaks me out is letting the hygentist look inside my mouth. I trust the dentist now, but the hygentist???? I don't know her. Did that freak anyone else out meeting the hygentist for the first time??? I just want to cancel the appointment and :hidesbehindsofa: once again
 
kitkat

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Re: "I hate dentists"

freakout said:
I think I would have wanted to strangle my mother if she did that :scared:
I think had I not been in complete shock and horror from the situation I probably would have stangled her. She clearly had a death wish. Her excuse was that she just "forgot" to tell me but she lies. And then she had the nerve to offer to go back with me :mad:!...as if!...she was the last person I wanted to see at the time...well not the last, the dentist was the last.. but I didn't want to see the last person with the second to the last at the same time together. At least the dentist was innocent in this sham! That was pure evil, I don't think I've ever been that petrified in my life! lol I mean that is soo unethical and immoral and just all around not right, you have to give a person time to mentally prepare for something like that! You can't just be like "Oh btw..." :scared: That's one of those times that the mind goes :o RUN! and them darn legs just freeze up on ya and suddenly somehow you are sitting in the waiting room and they are calling your name and escorting you back. That rush of anticipatory anxiety was a pure nightmare!

My parents just nagged and nagged and nagged again until I finally gave in and went back to the dentist. I even screamed at my dad after he yelled at me for not making an appointment, telling I was going to lose all my teeth. Needless to say I have never talked about my phobia to him. When I finally went back and needed an extraction, I got the I told you so look, but he didn't dare say anything.
I hate it when people don't understand anything about this fear and try to make strides in fixing it, and if they don't know anything about it to begin with then they clearly don't know the appropriate way to handle it. To bad the only one who DOES know the best way to handle it is the dentist whom is the person feared most and causing the fear...hm...ironic lol.

I have to have a cleaning in a few weeks, I think what freaks me out is letting the hygentist look inside my mouth. I trust the dentist now, but the hygentist???? I don't know her. Did that freak anyone else out meeting the hygentist for the first time??? I just want to cancel the appointment & :hidesbehindsofa: once again
I had built up a lot of trust in my dentist at first cause she did the consultation, exam and first cleaning, and procedure and then I got thrown for a loop when I discovered that the hygenist was going to be cleaning my teeth when I returned for the next cleaning but it turned out alright. I like to think that the hygenists are trained in working with nervous patients as well and chances are if the dentist has seen that many nervous patients, the hygenist has most likely seen the same amount seeing as they have the same patients and are probably just as experienced with treating them :thumbsup:. Also if the dentist is that nice chances are he wouldn't allow a hygenist to treat his patients badly,(that would be bad for business and hurt his rep.). Try to relax and take your mind off it (easier said then done I know!). I send you Best wishes for your next appt and a friendly hygenist as well:XXLhug:.
 
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Re: "I hate dentists"

I hope the hygentist is nice too. I have had problems with the receptionists in his office so I wonder. He has 3 hygentists. I have good about two of them, but I have the 3rd one and have heard she is older and misses stuff, but I will make sure the dentist take a looksee :( I just hate having someone new do anything to my mouth, especially when it hurts, which it does. Who know maybe I will be able to tell hear all my fear, couldn't tell the dentist :( They might just all come pouring out, but then again she might tell the dentist everything :o My appointment is 2 1/2 weeks away and I am a wreck :scared::scared:
 
kitkat

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Re: "I hate dentists"

freakout said:
I hope the hygentist is nice too. I have had problems with the receptionists in his office so I wonder.
I think that is just in every office I have yet to find an office with a good dentist and a good receptionist, it seems impossible to find...fortunately the receptionist isn't the one who's going to be working on your teeth.

He has 3 hygentists. I have good about two of them, but I have the 3rd one & have heard she is older and misses stuff, but I will make sure the dentist take a looksee :(
Sounds like a pretty good size office he has going there. Mine is relatively small so the dentist has time to check each time anyway and she does the scaling herself for some reason...not sure why this is :confused: but the advantage to that is I always get the same two people pretty much ....both the same assistant and dentist.

I just hate having someone new do anything to my mouth, especially when it hurts, which it does. Who know maybe I will be able to tell hear all my fear, couldn't tell the dentist :( They might just all come pouring out, but then again she might tell the dentist everything :o My appointment is 2 1/2 weeks away and I am a wreck
Aww I know how that is. I absolutely hate switching offices for that very reason that I don't know what I'm getting till I'm there. Who knows though, she could actually be really gentle and kind, I didn't like my dentist at all when I first met her, she seemed brisk and distant but after having a treatment with her I realized I was really wrong and she is quite gentle and compassionate. Turned out to be the best yet actually. Maybe it could turn around? A tip I have to offer you is, try to stay open minded, especially on the comfort aspect cause if you are expecting pain then it's gonna be harder to relax and you may actually interpret some other sensation like a vibration or pressure to actually be painful... Don't be embarrassed about making her aware of your fears cause it will make it easier for her to treat you (I too am still struggling with this so I realize how difficult it is) and even if she told the dentist I don't think he would look down on you for it...It might improve future treatments cause he'll know what makes you uncomfortable...so even if it does all "pour out", don't sweat it. I noticed that the more they know, the smoother things seem to go, athough getting there is a bumpy ride. Hang in there! I'll be thinking of you sending you positive thoughts :thumbsup:
 
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Re: "I hate dentists"

I really wish my dentist did the cleaning himself too :p Especially since he know what my mouth looks like already. He also is the only one to see me with my top denture out.lol I know he is extra gentle with a sore tooth and I trust him. I really don't look forward to seeing this hygentist at all :scared: I just have to "bite the bullet" and do it, but I really just want to cancel and :hidesbehindsofa:
 
vicki

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Re: "I hate dentists"

It might be OK you know :) but as usual the unknown and an unfamiliar person is always scary :(.

As for :hidesbehindsofa: , well let's just say that if I thought I could get away with it, I'd definitely spend appointments at the dentists hiding behind a big blue sofa! (except I don't think I'd be able to get it through the door and up the stairs :p so I may have to settle for dark glasses and a paper bag over my head instead!).
 
vicki

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Re: "I hate dentists"

Actually, going back to the original title of the post, there's no way I could say to my current dentist that I hated him because;

a) he's the one with the sharp pointy instruments and a drill :scared:

and b) when I get nervous and scared, he gets pretty nervous as well so I wouldn't have the heart to say it to him! :rolleyes:
 
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Re: "I hate dentists"

I know hiding is not the answer, but when our fear creep up, it really sounds like a great solution :( I know that I should just go and get it over with, and then I don't have to worry about another cleaning for six more months ;) Like you said though it is the fear of an unfamiliar person that is getting to me. What will she think of my only having a few teeth left? What will she say about the teeth I do have left? Will she scold me about the state those teeth are in? Will she hurt me? I know that if the teeth are hurting I can ask if the dentist could numb me first, but how do I ask for that? Will she think I am a whimp? :(
 
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Re: "I hate dentists"

I suppose the only way to find out is the same as with dentists - i. e. tell her about your worries and if you don't like her style, get a cleaning with someone else? I can't imagine she'd behave in a way that drives customers away though, it would make for pretty bad business (unless there really is a gross undersupply of dentists/hygienists in your area, which I doubt).
 
kitkat

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Re: "I hate dentists"

vicki said:
Actually, going back to the original title of the post, there's no way I could say to my current dentist that I hated him because;

a) he's the one with the sharp pointy instruments and a drill :scared:

and b) when I get nervous and scared, he gets pretty nervous as well so I wouldn't have the heart to say it to him! :rolleyes:
I second that reasoning! It's probably not a real good idea to anger the person who is about to stick sharp pointy instruments in your mouth...when my dad used to have to take me to my appts he would go and start complaining about being billed wrong from his previous appt earlier in the week or whatever cause the receptionist would put something through wrong with the insurance and then the dentist would have to come out and smooth things over and than they would call me back just after that while everyone is still irritated and I was like..." :( Now??? :scared: Let's wait!" LOL Like it would have killed him to wait til after treatment to raise conflict. Fortunately they never took it out on me or my gums but the concern for myself is still there lol.

I couldn't say that to mine either...she's been to nice and patient with me to say that to her...if anything I owe her a thankyou!
 
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