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Lots of work in the last year, still finding issues. Having anxiety/panic attacks



Junior member
May 3, 2018
Lots of work in the last year, still finding issues. Having anxiety/panic attacks

New to the forum, hello!
I'm 25, essentially didn't brush my teeth or go to the dentist in college (age 18-24ish). I had braces as a child. I have had dental/medical phobia my whole life, which explains why I buried my head in the sand for so long (i still haven't had a regular physical in over 10years). Finally got the courage to go around July 2017, and immediately started with work. Between July 2017 and Feb 2018, I had ~12 fillings ranging from small to large, a large root canal + crown, a deep clean, and a Night-guard made. Even with insurance, I have spent ~$4000 out of pocket which was a financial strain, and been under the ?knife? for at least a full 8hrs combined at this point. It almost seems like i am going to the dentist once a month, non-stop.

I've had 2 regular cleaning appointments on a 4mo schedule since the majority of the work was complete. About a month ago in April I had a regular cleaning, and a large cavity (that was missed in the xray in July?!??) was found (right side, upper rear most molar, outside face, my wisdom teeth have already been extracted). I had the cavity done 1 week ago, it but continued below the gum line further than the dentist thought.

He had me back today to double check the work and found that he needs to cut the gum away and do some more filling to the same cavity under the gum line! He can poke around with a pick and find painful spots under the gum line.

Due to other factors in my personal and professional life, I've recently been having anxiety attacks, and essentially had another one shortly after my appointment today. I booked an appointment with my parents' long-time dentist for a second opinion. I don't know if I can handle any more dental procedures, and at this point I just want to be done, I have to be done. If there was a way to put me under general anesthetic and just finish the work, i would gladly pay $500, $1000, $2000 or whatever it costs. I feel like I've paid the price for my negligence but its just not stopping. Looking for recommendation and support. It is starting to affect my work life as well.

thanks for reading
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Re: Lots of work in the last year, still finding issues. Having anxiety/panic attacks

Hi Julian and welcome to the forum. :) Reading what you managed to go through in the last few months is very impressive and inspiring and at the same time I really understand your exhaustion. It seems to me that you had reached a point of being done with all the work and then suddenly a problem arises and I totally get the impact it has on your anxiety.

Knowing where your limits are and realizing that you do not feel able to go through any further treatment is actually a good thing. Taking care of the own boarders is an important part of dealing with any kind of anxiety.

It's good to have a second opinion (if going through a further exam doesn't make your anxiety worse) and it might be a good idea to look for some sedation options. GA is the 'heaviest' of the possibilities, but how about iv sedation or nitrous, maybe in combination with some oral sedation? Would you feel able to get your treatment in this way?

Please do not judge yourself for not having taken care of your oral health earlier or for your hygiene habbits. It's very easy to look back (now when you're done with so much treatment) and judge yourself from today's perspective, but that's not fair. You are doing your best now and you were doing your best back then. Avoiding dental visits and not taking the perfect care of the teeth are symptoms of dental fear and nobody can get judged for it. The most people who suffer from dental anxiety struggle with taking care of their teeth (how should they - for taking care of your teeth you need the information about how to do it and what to pay attention to and these information you get from your dentist, but if you fear the dentist and do not go there, you have no chance to get supported and advised about what is important, so you just keep doing things that have negative effect on your teeth).The only thing that counts is that you plucked up the courage and do better now.

All the best wishes and let us know your thoughts
Re: Lots of work in the last year, still finding issues. Having anxiety/panic attacks

Julian, thank you for sharing.

You are are well on your to success.

Farther than you probably realize.

Keep taking action.

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