Information for First Apt

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liz8429

Junior member
Joined
Apr 18, 2011
Messages
2
Hello,

I have my first apt in 5 years on Wed. I am very, very nervous!

I already explained my nerves over email to the staff. I've also heard very good things about this office in terms of calming anxiety. But I am wondering - how much do I tell the dentist about my fear and past anxiety?

I've been diagnosed with PTSD - caused by another family tragedy. I am recovering with the help of a psychologist, support group, and medication. PTSD has made me jumpy, fearful to trust, and extra anxious in medical situations. I'd like to mention this to the dentist. But is this too much information to share with a dentist? Will it make the situation very awkward?

Before the family tragedy, I've always had dental anxiety. I had a terrible childhood dentist. The most upsetting event happened when I was 12 yrs old. and had 4 teeth extracted. The dentist yelled at me throughout the procedure. I was constantly gagging and ending up swallowing one of my teeth. This was a permanent tooth - not a baby tooth! To make it worse, the dentist didn't tell my mother. I told my mom in the car ride home and she freaked out - concerned that it would injure my insides, etc. She did confront the dentist and he was very casual about it all. My second question - does this happen often in dentistry? It was concerning to me and my mom, but the was so casual about it and didn't have any concerns.

Thank you very much for any help and advice!!

Liz
 
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harley99

Junior member
Joined
Apr 19, 2011
Messages
5
Liz...I had not been to the dentist in nine years and it was because I was having some problems with some back molars and after seeing an endontist, periodontist and regular dentist in the span of a week I threw up my hands and dealt with the on again off..more on than off pain. The endontist said it something happens and it abcessed you'll know it. Well nine years later one of those molars did abscess...no cavity or filling in the tooth. It took everything I had to get to the dentist. What I learned from it was keep going, keep looking for answers and that you can run from your fear but you cannot hide. I put up with years of pain from those teeth because I was too afraid to keep pushing for answers. Now I have bigger issues including bone loss. Like I said you can run but you can't hide. I feel your fear. I too have been a dental phobic all of my life and if there isn't anything that I regret more than not having courage sooner. Hang in there and feel the fear but do it anyway. You won't regret it.
 
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harley99

Junior member
Joined
Apr 19, 2011
Messages
5
Liz, I forgot to mention. I told my dentist right away that I was a "nut" when it came to anything dental. In fact, I told the receptionist the same when I made the appointment. They have handled me with kid gloves because of it. If you find your dentist isn't willing to treat your anxiety seriously, run do not walk and find a different dentist. There are plenty of dentists out there that are sympathetic.
 
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norwegianchick

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 13, 2011
Messages
194
Hi!

I don't have as good a reason as you for cold sweating, turning pale and getting a dry mouth at the dentist's office, which is what I do every time, but good dentists accept this and try to help me even when I don't explain why I'm like that.

So you don't have to tell them, but if you do, I don't think it would be awkward for them at all: it's just medical information about you that makes it easier for them to treat you.

Good luck!

;)
 
brit

brit

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Mar 23, 2006
Messages
6,866
Hi Liz8429
:welcome:
Your childhood dentist sounds awful (scary what can happen when no parent is in the room) - no it is not normal to swallow a tooth during an extraction - it is likely a sign of incompetence on the dentists's part - in fact it would be cause for concern about your having aspirated it into your lung rather than stomach so there is no way he should have been so casual about it.

Information about check ups is here:http://www.dentalfearcentral.org/faq/check-up/

You should tell the dentist as much as you feel comfortable with or as much as they need to know to be able to understand your issues and how to help you. You may want to jot a few points down and hand it to them.

The information here for abuse survivors may be of use to you in deciding what you want them to do to help: http://www.dentalfearcentral.org/fears/abuse-survivors/

Some dentists when they hear a patient is nervous are more used to patients wanting to avoid pain above all else but other things might be more your triggers such as lack of control etc etc .
 
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liz8429

Junior member
Joined
Apr 18, 2011
Messages
2
Thank you all for the support.

I had my first apt today and it was such a relief! Much, much easier than I expected. I just met with the dentist, got some xrays, and discussed my concerns. I felt totally at ease with the place and feel good about going back there for treatment.
 
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