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Not dealing well with the prospect of wisdom teeth removal



Well-known member
Jan 5, 2009
Nitrous for cleaning

I had my first cleaning/scaling yesterday and it was a bit uncomfortable but I got through it ok, and the swelling in my lower front gum (the only real problem area) has gone down already. The hygienist has scheduled me for another appointment in a few weeks as there was too much to be done in one appointment, and I'm a little anxious to go back without any anaesthetic (I was numb on one side this time as it was straight after having a filling done), so I have requested nitrous even the hygienest made it clear she prefers her patients not to use it. The receptionist did offer it to me when I made my next appointment (I turned it down at the time but rang back later to say I'd changed my mind), so I'm obviously not the only one who requests it for this procedure? I found it helped me immensely when getting the filling done and I am sure that it wil help me relax for the cleaning too. I just hope that the hygienist doesn't think less of me!

Does anyone else have a similar experience where they've stood up for what they felt would help them, even though they've been discouraged by their dentist or hygienist?
Re: Nitrous for cleaning

Hi Jessica :),
even though I haven't been in the same situation before, I think it's a great idea to take the initiative and request what you know will help you (if it's on offer anyway!). It shows that you are taking control of the situation and making sure that things will go smoothly for you. This is much better than the alternative (keeping quiet and getting into a situation where you feel you can't go back).

Fair play to you :thumbsup:!

(P.S.: if there are other hygienists working in the same practice/office and you would feel more comfortable with someone else, don't be shy to ask - but it may have been an off-the-cuff remark and if you're otherwise happy with her, that's fine. Did she say why she prefers her patients not to use it? There may be some mundane explanation behind it.)
Re: Nitrous for cleaning

No, she didn't really say why she prefers not to use it, apart from she likes to build trust with her patients so they feel they can get through it without any assitance. I'm sure I'll be able to handle that once I'm 'caught up' with where I should be at and just on a regular maintenance schedule, but for now I feel this will really help me and will definitely make me less likely to not go back. Which I don't want to do because I'm already seeing and feeling really good results (less puffiness) in only two days.

There are other hygeinists in the practice but for the most part, I did like her (she made me laugh too which I liked) and I'd like to see how things work out.

I think it's just something I have to work through because I hit the jackpot with the dentist I found and felt completely comfortable with him straight away, but I might just need a bit more time to feel totally comfortable with the hygienist.

Thanks for your support in terms of asking for what I felt would help me. It means a lot!
Re: Nitrous for cleaning

It's now only one day until my next cleaning appointment and I am starting to get quite nervous as I'm not sure how much she did last time and how much she still has left to do. So glad I ended up going with the nitrous though as it really helps to know there will be something there to help me relax and get through it.

Also nervous about the state of my gums. They have definitely improved but I'm hoping they've improved enough to not require any further treatment other than cleaning (which I think is partly a 'deep cleaning', but we don't use that term in Australia).

I think really I just want it to be over and to be told that things are going ok and that they should be back to normal again at some point in the not too distant future.

I also just got a call from the dentist's office to confirm my appointment for Thursday for two fillings, and even though I'm no longer afraid of the needle and the filling, I started to shake when I got off the phone. It's like my mind is over the fear, but my body is still catching up.
Re: Nitrous for cleaning

If you feel you need the nitrous for cleaning, then you ask for it. I have it for cleaning and it makes me much more relaxed. My dentist, who is really understanding, actually said that she prefers nervous patients to have it as then they are relaxed and don't move and so her job is easier. You are well within your rights to ask for it. Good luck tomorrow.
Re: Nitrous for cleaning

Well I just got back and the hygienist asked me when I got there if I wanted to try starting without the nitrous. I said yes, I would like to try, and she assured me that it was on standby and I could ask for it any time I felt I needed it.

The procedure was quicker and less invasive than last time (because I hadn't been for so long before, so there was a lot to do) and I was fine. A little tense, but pretty much ok and I didn't feel I needed to ask for the gas at any time.

I still think the gas is wondeful and it would have been slightly easier WITH the gas, but I am very proud for doing it without it!
Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Well I seem to have hit a snag. Nearly two weeks after a very small filling and five days after a bite adjustment, the tooth is still causing me pain when I chew. Based on what the dentist has told me, the dentists on here have said and the research I have done, this should not be happening if all was right with the tooth.

So I realise I need to go back and get it checked but I'm struggling to pick up the phone to make the appointment, and I keep telling myself I'll wait one more day and if the pain is still there, then I'll make another appointnment. This is not helped by the fact that the pain is not as bad as it was before the bite adjustment, so it feels like it's getting better, but it just doesn't seem to be going away completely.

The possibility of having to get the filling re-done doesn't actually scare me, it's more of a hassle than anything. I guess there is that worry in the back of my mind that a root canal might be required, which might be what is stopping me from making the call.

Any encouragement from those that have experienced similar situations when they thought everything was sorted, but now realise there might be another problem would be appreciated. Thanks :)
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Hi Jessica, I only just spotted your post and noticed that no one had replied - have you managed to make that call yet?
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Hello Jessica:

I understand the hassle. On the good side of things it should only take a few minutes for the dentist to discover the problem.

It could be a very simple fix. This is better than living with the pain and discomfort. It might be nothing and just take some time to calm done. But a quick visit will put your mind at ease.

Once you get this out of the way you will feel better. The worry and discomfort is much more of a distraction than scheduling the appointment and getting it done with.

As Nike says: "Just do it!" :)

All the best
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Thanks for your replies. Unfortunately I have not yet made the call and it's now been two weeks since the filling adjustment and three weeks since the filling itself, and I'm still getting pain when I attempt to chew hard/chewy food on that side, such as nuts and meat. Soft food is fine though.

I guess I keep thinking that it's going to get better on it's own, and also maybe that it's not bad enough to warrant going back seeing as it's not as bad as it was, and that I'll look stupid if I go back for no good reason.

Logically I know that it's not right, and that going back is what I need to do, but I just keep talking myself out of it!

I'm going to do my best to try to make the call tomorrow.
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Sorry to hear that it's been proving so hard :(. You mentioned in another thread that you would find it easier to talk face-to-face rather than make a phone call. Would it be possible for you to pop into the practice and arrange a visit that way?
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Hi JessicaB
I've just read some of your threads - the diary's a lovely read by the way...and I think it may help you if you take stock of just how much you have achieved in such a short space of time:respect:....so you've had a thorough cleaning and 3 fillings - all of which you coped with really really well and you are now hesitant to go back about just one of the fillings because it is still painful in certain eating situations......I suppose if the pain is only with certain hard foods it is up to you when you choose to go back but one thing I do know for sure...your dentist will not mind the 'intrusion' and will feel bad that you have had difficulties and been afraid to return, were you to share that with him.

He could quickly evaluate the health of the tooth as Stressdoc said, put your mind at rest..it may well be ok to 'wait and see' ....it could still go away in time (or at least cold sensitivity in newly placed fillings can).

If it did look like further treatment were in order, you still have the final say over this and if an rct is suggested, you could opt to be referred to an endo for it anyway and use nitrous..they are the experts at rcts. Likewise for your wisdom teeth...it's up to you when you have them out...you can/will be referred to an oral surgeon unless they are extremely simple to do...and you decide the timing and can opt for sedation.

But I don't believe he will rush into anything more than tinkering with the bite a bit more (painless).
You know you can do it :grouphug:
Could you send an email explaining the position and asking if they think you should come back in...that way you've thrown the ball into their court?
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Hi Brit. That's a good idea to send them an email, I might do that. Thanks also for your advice about the how to approach future treatment. The wisdom teeth are starting to play on my mind even more now, as the one that is partly through is on the other side to where the sore tooth from the filling is and it flares up and gets sore every now and then and has flared up at the moment due to eating more on that side to protect the sore tooth.

And thanks for your suggestion too Letsconnect, I have actually thought about calling into the dentist and making an appointment that way. In fact I work quite close to the dental surgery so I see the building everyday and keep thinking I shouold just go in,. It would also mean that I don't have to make the call from work with lots of people around, so it's more private in that respect...not that I don't want my work colleagues to know (they've actually been a really great sounding board about this stuff - it's somehow easier to talk to them than close friends), but I just find the idea of making the phone call with people listening even more daunting.

I really don't understand why I am so reluctant to call in the first place though, because I really like my new dentist and his staff and I know they wouldn't make me feel stupid or bad for coming back in, even if there turned out not to be a problem. I do realise it's what they're there for and they'd want me to put my mind at ease and get it checked out :)
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Well, some progress has been made. I sent an email to the dental surgery about 20 minutes ago explaining my situation and asking them to confirm that I should be coming back in again to have it looked at. I also asked if they would be willing to arrange the appointment via email as I keep putting off making the phone call, and I advised them of my availability. I hope they are willing to do this, I'm pretty sure they will be. They have been very good so far.

It took most of the morning to draft the email and actually send it off. I'm hoping I can now focus on my work for the rest of the day!
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Well done :jump:
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Thanks Brit. I just heard back from the practice manager and she has checked with the dentist and they have told me to come back in and have the filling re-done. So I know now I wasn't worrying over nothing, which I was pretty sure I wasn't anyway, but it's nice to have it confirmed by the dentist.

They even booked the gas for me, which I completely forgot to ask about...that's great service from them to remember that I have used it in the past and to offer it to me without me having to ask.

They also managed to fit me in this week which is great, less time to worry about it. Actually, I feel much better already :)
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Thanks Brit. I just heard back from the practice manager and she has checked with the dentist and they have told me to come back in and have the filling re-done. So I know now I wasn't worrying over nothing, which I was pretty sure I wasn't anyway, but it's nice to have it confirmed by the dentist.

They even booked the gas for me, which I completely forgot to ask about...that's great service from them to remember that I have used it in the past and to offer it to me without me having to ask.

They also managed to fit me in this week which is great, less time to worry about it. Actually, I feel much better already :)

I think you are in very good hands...shame more aren't patient-centred like that.:party: Re-doing a filling is usually easier as most drilling of tooth structure has already been done, they just need to remove the 'filling stuff' , shape it a bit maybe and put new stuff in. :grouphug:
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

I told my partner that I had contacted the dental office and that they checked with the dentist and he confirmed I needed to go back and have the filling replaced. His response was 'how much is that going to cost you?'....when cost is actually the last thing on my mind. I have health insurance and a good job so it's really not an issue. I just said I didn't know and then moved the conversation on to a different subject. I find it hard to talk about in any forum other than a written one anyway. I guess he just doesn't understand (partly my fault for not explaining it very well) so I am very grateful for this forum where people do get it :)

I do feel better having made the appointment but it's still playing on my mind and I'm not sleeping well. I even get worried when I'm eating something that doesn't hurt (only certain types of food that hit in a certain spot are causing me pain) and I start to wonder if it's got better on it's own and I'm wasting my time going in. Like this morning I was eating some very crunchy toast and it didn't hurt so I wondered if it had fixed itself overnight.

But really, I know it's still not right and I do need to go back and get it sorted out. I can't spend the rest of my life assessing the food I'm about to eat and wondering if I need to make sure I only eat it on the other side when it can be so easily fixed. That's just silly!
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

In Europe it would likely be free since it hasn't been right since the outset but not caring about the cost either way is definitely a healthy attitude ;).
Re: Need to go back but I'm stuck!

Well I went back and the first thing the dentist did was check the bite - still high apparently. I guess I'm a little confused as to why he couldn't tell this last time. Not confused in that I think he doesn't know what he's doing, but just that I don't really understand it all.

He said given that there has been improvement and that the bite was still high, to give it another few days to a week before contacting them again, then maybe he'll look at re-doing the filling. This was good news in one respect, but then again I had psyched myself up to have it done, so it wouldn't have been so bad if he'd done it.

He explained the possibilities of what else could be wrong, such as stress fractures (though this is unlikely given the size and location of the filling he said) which he drew me a diagram of on the whiteboard. A bit scary, and I forgot to ask if they can be fixed or not if it does turn out to be that.

He also said he's reluctant to do a root canal or extraction until he has exhausted all the other possibilities. Good to know!

So basically it's wait and see and hope that the second bite adjustment fixes the problem. It's a bit frustrating, but I understand that it's a difficult thing to diagnose and there's lots of trial and error involved in order to avoid unnecessary treatment.

Fingers crossed that it heals up ok (and soon) and that I don't have to go back now til my next check-up...