New to site- Happy to be here- Extreme Fear currently

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rionmo

Junior member
Joined
May 21, 2018
Messages
3
Hello-
I am 42 year old male, husband and father of 2 teenagers. I am so glad I found this site. I have an extreme at of the Dentist. It all started when I was young. I was not great at brushing and flossing. Always was scolded for poor dental hygiene. My parents would take me to regular check ups. However, growing up on military bases, the care wasn't always gentle. My cries for stopping weren't always heard. Fast Forward to 20 years ago, I had to have all 4 wisdom teeth out at the same time. I've never been in so much pain that I could do nothing about for a solid month. turned out, that I had dry socket and had to go back in and get that fixed. I swore then and there, that unless my teeth were falling out, that I would never go back. Well, just a few years later, I broke a molar, I thought that they could save the tooth, so I went in to the dentist. To my surprise, it was too far gone and he suggested extraction. Plus wanted me to be aware that I had multiple cavities. The day of the procedure, they tried to use local anesthesia to deaden the pain. They ended up having to give me 13 shots because I could still feel them sawing, cutting and pulling. It was very painful, I begged or Nitrous. But he refused. The procedure was successful, the blood clot worked as well. So I was sent home with some Vicodin. The problem, the Vicodin didn't work for me. My jaw was on fire. I couldn't stand I couldn't lay down nothing would relieve the pain. Finally, my wife called the dentist as it was nearing the end of the day. He sent me a script with Percocet, which finally brought me relief. That was 10 years ago, I swore again that I would never ever step foot in a dentist office again.

Well, I have cavities, and I am also missing fillings that all hurt a little sometimes. But not enough to get me back to the dentist. I took out my oldest for dinner, because he had made the honor roll. I was biting down on a piece of steak and lightening struck again. My other molar broke. I cannot for the life of me bring myself to make the call into the dentist office. I haven't been able to eat much or sleep much since Saturday night. I know that I can't keep living like this, but also can't bring myself to call. I am terrified of the pain!
 
Enarete

Enarete

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Sep 18, 2017
Messages
3,256
Hi rionmo and welcome to the forum. There is quite a lot going on in your post so let me address your points separately.

So you have been scolded for dental hygiene, experienced military dental care (I don't know why but I imagine it being really brutal), had been ignored when asking the dentist to stop, had experienced painful treatment and had experienced untreated dry socket (a month?! omg, how could you survive that, are you made of iron?!).. you would be out or your mind if you wanted to go to the dentist ever again in your life!

There is a particular dynamics when it comes to dental fear and it seems that this is exactly where you are being right now. It goes like this: avoiding dentist at any costs, which means no check-ups which leads to problems coming. This problems are keeping being ignored because a bit of pain or discomfort is still better than seeing a dentist. The real problem comes as soon as something arises that makes seeing a dentist inevitable, mostly because of a lot of pain involved. That's when the discomfort gets bigger than the fear so that you finally go. And since there is a problem that needs to get treated urgently, there is not too much time to be gentle or talk about fears too much or separate the treatment into small steps. As a result of this, the experience made is again a negative one and leads to more avoidance and the whole loop starts from the beginning.

It might be a good idea to find a new dentist, one that would be willing to take things slowly and not only fix your teeth but also your anxiety, at least to a level that would make it possible for you to come back regularly. Your new dentist needs to know about your past experiences and your fears. Such a dentist will have experience with patients who are difficult to get numbed up and will do his best to put you in control. In the state you are in I wouldn't opt for any treatment or exam at the first appointment but purely a chat with a dentist to see how they could help you. This might seem weird to you, but any dentist who works with nervous patients should be able to offer this to you. There is a good recommendation section on this site, you might want to look if you could find a recommended dentist in your area.

Modern dentistry works very differently from what you have experienced in your past. A dentist needs your consent before he even looks in your mouth and you can withdraw your consent at any time and any point during a treatment. A stop sign is a must nowadays and will be explained to you probably before even an exam starts. If you get numbed up and it turnes out that you still feel something, then the procedure stops and won't be processed until you are numb. Should you seem being 'unnumbable', then your dentist will consult further options with you. He might send you to someone who is experienced with patients who are hard to get numbed (we even have a dentist here on the forum, who specializes on such patients) or offer you sedation or any other options. This might sound like a fairy tale, but this is how modern dentistry works and this is what your mind needs to learn. By the way, dry socket is treatable and I am sure that you would be able to ask a dentist about it much earlier if you had one you trust.

Here are some links you might find helpful:
https://www.dentalfearcentral.org/fears/pain/
https://www.dentalfearcentral.org/fears/not-numb/

I really wish for you to find a good dentist who would work with you on addressing your problems and I can guarantee you that such dentists exist. Nobody should have to suffer so much because of dental fear - there are a lot o ways to deal with it.

All the best wishes and keep us posted
 
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rionmo

Junior member
Joined
May 21, 2018
Messages
3
Sorry for the scattered post. Yes there is quite a lot. Been both commended and scolded for my dental hygiene. But was shocked when I thought I was doing a good job and still had cavities, when I was younger. Military dentist didn't have much time for TLC for their patients, mostly consisting of GI's. yes have been ignored on multiple occasions by Dentist when I've told them I was in pain. Many painful treatments and an untreated dry socket. So yeah, I do have reservations about calling the Dentist.

Well, update: It got worse overnight. To the point where what's left of the tooth is throbbing. So much pain. I made a call for an appointment today at 3 PM. I mad t clear to the scheduler that I am terrified of this and will walk out if I have too. So much pain and swelling.
 
Enarete

Enarete

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Sep 18, 2017
Messages
3,256
Sorry to hear that it got worse, hope you get rid of the pain asap. Good luck at 3pm, sending some good vibes, let us know how you are doing. Good to hear that you have made a clear point that you are afraid and will only accept being treated well. In this way you are taking care of yourself and if you do, then your dental team will too.

May they put you at ease and treat you kindly and with respect and provide you with good, painless treatment so that you walk out with an experience as positive as possible. :clover:
 
R

rionmo

Junior member
Joined
May 21, 2018
Messages
3
So the tooth came out, I had to do it with Nitrious. 3 shots, but I could still feel him at first. I told him that, he left and came back about 20 minutes later the nitrous was doing it’s job. I felt pressure but the pain was gone. The Novacane lasted for about 4 hours. I have a good clot and some meds. Antibiotics and hydrocodone, for infection and pain.

It was really ok, I told them I didn’t want lecturerd about dental hygiene, or everything I was doing wrong, I just wanted the tooth pulled. They obliged.

The only thing the dentist said to me was next time don’t wait so long to see him.

That was it the pain I feel now is not nearly as bad as it’s been in the past. I understand there will be an ache due to the nature of the surgery.

Glad the tooth is out. Looking forward to eating regularly, got some good sleep last night for the first time in a few days!

Thanks for the support, not sure if I’m ready to go back right away, but it’s now a small possibility.
 
Enarete

Enarete

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Sep 18, 2017
Messages
3,256
Glad to hear that it went well and you can finally recover and come back to life. :)

And if you ever feel like possibly going back to the dentist (maybe to build some trust, good relationship, a tiny filling or whatever) and need some support, you know where you can find us :grouphug:
 
Z

Zoidberg444

Member
Joined
Jan 13, 2018
Messages
42
So the tooth came out, I had to do it with Nitrious. 3 shots, but I could still feel him at first. I told him that, he left and came back about 20 minutes later the nitrous was doing it’s job. I felt pressure but the pain was gone. The Novacane lasted for about 4 hours. I have a good clot and some meds. Antibiotics and hydrocodone, for infection and pain.

It was really ok, I told them I didn’t want lecturerd about dental hygiene, or everything I was doing wrong, I just wanted the tooth pulled. They obliged.

The only thing the dentist said to me was next time don’t wait so long to see him.

That was it the pain I feel now is not nearly as bad as it’s been in the past. I understand there will be an ache due to the nature of the surgery.

Glad the tooth is out. Looking forward to eating regularly, got some good sleep last night for the first time in a few days!

Thanks for the support, not sure if I’m ready to go back right away, but it’s now a small possibility.

That's great news mate. You know if you decide to go back and have more work done i can really recommend conscious sedation if you find a dentist that offers it. I had multiple extractions (routine and surgical) and fillings done with it and barely remember anything about the 3.5 hours i spent in the chair. Its changed my life since having all my issues sorted out. I'm totally pain free in my mouth. Its been months and it still feels amazing. I even managed a few sessions with the hygienist.
 
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