• Dental Phobia Support

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Not to be dramatic but honestly, I can't do this

I don't see how asking about cancellations again would be considered "rocking the boat" - you'd be doing them a favour by filling a slot which might go empty otherwise, so it's a win-win situation :)
@letsconnect That’s a good point. I might the week, or even email then to take the half chicken way out.

I just wonder how long a tooth like this would last. If a dentist drills out a lot of a tooth leaving only the front half of it basically remaining, how long feasibly could it last providing there’s no new decay? Or if they drilled down deep into a broken tooth but instead of filling it, they just left it.

Makes me wonder how long it could feasibly last with as little wear and tear as possible on it (but obviously doing my best not to chew that side).
 
So it's been a long time since my last update. It's an interesting one.

My appointment is now in 10 days. Honestly it's been so slow. I've had all the same stresses and emotions as before, just haven't posted. I feel like somehow I've caused more damage -- and you know that feeling when you speak, and you can just feel your tongue brushing against rough edges and stuff that just shouldn't be there? I've got that feeling so frequently. I'm just perpetually aware of my teeth and dental situation at this point.

So...I've actually been shamefully self medicating just to blank out the days to get through, and to deal having to come to terms with the issues I've got. When you're told you need a dozen fillings and have to be around people still for a month, I just wanna blank out this entire time until I get them sorted. So even before work I've been taking a lot of stuff; Ambien, Zopiclone, Pregablin, Diazepam...just last shift I was falling asleep, literally drooling at the desk, and had a few people people hit me in the ribs like "c'mon, stop that". One of my colleagues even said ''seriously, follow me now and sit in here for 10 to sort it out" and took me to an empty office, and the lady in charge said to me ''just go, I'll finish up your stuff, seriously go now" 30 minutes before the end of my shift, as I took literally 20 minutes to complete a task that would take me 2 minutes. Genuinely I was struggling to even see the mouse cursor and move it to click on something. Bad, bad times.

Kinda worried it's bleeding over to that extent. I feel like I'm really pushing it acting like this at work, and on top of the dental stress I feel like I could be walking a tightrope before everything slowly spirals. I'm not sure, perhaps nobody will ever mention it and it'll be like it never happened, I'm hoping I can pass it off as just being under the weather/exhaustion if someone does mention it in an informal sort of warning capacity. I had been telling them for a while I wasn't sleeping great for unspecified reasons, because the stuff I was taking made me look tired so I passed it off as being that, but I was still performing normally. My manager also knows about my separation, so even if it came to her being made aware of it, that gives me some leeway too I think, like the stress catching up.

This was kind of a strange update to make. Not sure if I'm just incredibly paranoid because of my dental situation and being sensitive to everything, or if what I did has actually been perceived negatively, to the extent I will need ''a chat'' with my manager. I really felt the atmosphere get so...thick though, like when someone calls you out for a mistake in front of everyone and you feel everyone has their eyes on you, and like they'd lost their patience with me. Again maybe it's just paranoia and me being in such a state I couldn't read the situation, but it's not an ideal situation regardless.

I just need to get all this sorted and behind me quickly. I'm going to do my best to not get in that condition again for work, but this will be the longest 10 days of my life. And that's not even it over, I've still got another 3 appointments, and I know those nerves are going to come racing back again, despite getting over the initial appointment. Over a month to wait is just ridiculous honestly, but what can I do. I just hope that is no indication of the follow up appointment times..
 
Well, I had a talk with someone at work, nothing about dental, just the general situation. They said that apparently I've been acting worse than what I thought I was, and even people in other departments have been asking if anything was wrong with me. Apparently I was slurring words, falling asleep multiple times, we even keep a book of patients coming in and out (work in a hospital), and on a couple of the days I was writing completely different, almost not legible at all, scrawling lines from one name to the other, all over the page.....I didn't think it had got that bad.

It's all good though, honestly they're just worried about me as I've worked there for 7 years now, so I suppose I built up a lot of credit in a way because it's a complete 180. They were asking if anything was going on, if there's anything they can do to help or any services that they could provide, and honestly in my head I was thinking ''don't go to work on Ambien and Pregablin and then take more after lunch because you think it's losing effect". I brushed it off as just no sleep at all due to stress build up from my separation, and general things; my mother died 18 months ago and my sisters back home and are going a bit off the rails so I'm doing my best there, and I kind of dropped that in a little. Add the dental to this list and I guess it would be justified.

I suppose - excuse the pun - but it's a bit of a wake up call. Honestly on the dental side of things this one tooth is just bothering me to the point I genuinely want to tear it out. It's the one she didn't skip a beat in being able to save, just needs a large filling, and it's there on my paperwork. It's not even pain really, it's just the awareness that it's there, it's kind of like the feeling of having something stuck between your teeth, and it's so annoying you just want rid of it. But 24/7 and you can't get to it. My tongue and cheek is constantly running over it. Worse of all is just knowing that it's damaged, and that I still can't routinely make myself eat one side, so obviously it's been ''used'', as best I try prevent it.

With that I just feel so dirty around people, like an exposed wound just sat there festering, and I can't bandage it nor do anything with it (well, ultimately 12 of them, but plenty are small). In fact, even if it's imperceptible, they're actually getting worse. 8 more days. I don't even know what we're tackling first, I think I'm going to say please do this one first, even if it means waiting for the smaller or more "cosmetic" ones, or if there's a certain way she wants to tackle things in regards to numbing and what areas to go for, because I can't go another month with this, or however long the appointments are going to take. She said with my dental anxiety it's best we start small and maybe 1 or 2 fillings, but on the contrary while I love the sentiment and the recognition of my anxiety, I'd rather just get this done and as much done as possible each time.

I've reached that point where the general irritation, fear of more damage, actual recognition of my problems and facing them head on, all of that now completely overwhelms my anxiety. I'm like an injured wild animal who avoids any human contact, but the fear or instinct to run is defeated by the fact they almost acknowledge that the human wants to help. Or it seems that way when you see it. Funny metaphor and I'm sure we've all seen those videos, but that's exactly how I feel. Just put me on the chair, numb me up, and you can do basically anything to me.

I'm sorry this turned a bit heavy and wordy, but I suppose at this point I'm using it to vent and to potentially help anyone else who maybe in a similar boat.
 
On a second thought RE: dental and this specific tooth bothering me, I'm not entirely sure how much is the tooth itself, or how much is the fact it's bothering my cheek and tongue. And by bothering I mean constantly brushing against a ''foreign'' edge every time I speak, swallow, eat, or do anything.

It's hard to say but it feels over the last month+ my tongue and cheek have taken some punishment. Just generally feeling around inside my cheek even going right back I tend to get a sore spot now and again. It's kinda hard to gauge really but I wouldn't be surprised if that's contributing somewhat, or even mostly, to my exacerbation with that area right now.
 
I don't even know what we're tackling first, I think I'm going to say please do this one first, even if it means waiting for the smaller or more "cosmetic" ones, or if there's a certain way she wants to tackle things in regards to numbing and what areas to go for, because I can't go another month with this, or however long the appointments are going to take. She said with my dental anxiety it's best we start small and maybe 1 or 2 fillings, but on the contrary while I love the sentiment and the recognition of my anxiety, I'd rather just get this done and as much done as possible each time.

The key is to let her know what you want to tackle first! From what you've said about your treatment plan, there's no fixed order in which to do things, so it all boils down to your own preferences.

Our mouths are very sensitive, so it's not surprising that the constant feeling of something bothering your tongue and cheek is driving you nuts! Hopefully not for much longer though 🤞
 
@letsconnect I know, I'm finding it difficult to establish what is bothering me more (I'm sure it's tough for you guys struggling with my word essays to establish much sometimes or what to attack as a reply). If it's somehow my cheek/tongue just being constantly bothered, that area just being generally sensitive anyway tooth wise, or if it's now actually now not salvageable, but it's not really a pain per se like a shooting nerve one, more a ''dull 1-2/10 ache not really isolated on one specific area but the whole cheek" one. 1-2/10 pain annoyances are fine, not after a month, always exacerbated by the fact I'm answering 50+ calls a shift (and my still staunch addiction to sugarfree chewing gum even restricted to the other side). And after a month I dunno, it could be damaged more now, who knows. It always bothered me from day one though, had been a month ish since i got seen and got it okayed, so maybe time has taken its toll just on my cheek and tongue.

Second weird thing -- the corner of my mouth that side is dry and I feel it when I open my mouth and well, with a finger. Kinda sore if I do it out the blue. Somehow drooling more that side kinda thing? It's not from always having my open and messing/touching the tooth, I can barely go near it, brushing is bad enough. Just a curious thing I noticed, maybe entirely unrelated, so often so many of these things can be, like having a headache the last 2 days being days it's bugged me most after touch wood not having a headache for a couple months.

Also outside of the scope of this forum but on picking up the kiddo my tonight my ex said she's met someone and wants to know how to broach it in regards to the kiddo, how she sees it going down and wants it to, how we both feel about our still joint owned home, which is nice, not many would even offer that courtesy, but we go back to teenagers and are still good friends and communicate bits of bobs outside of my daughter. But I'm taking in this quite pivotal knowledge and discussion while my mouth is just blazing at me. Thanks for that one my higher power.
 
@Whyohwhy12 most likely the dryness in the corner of your mouth is unrelated, has it gotten worse or stayed the same since Tuesday?

I think if your dentist thought there was an urgent need to act on the chipped/broken tooth, they would have got you in earlier, so it's unlikely to be damaged more now.

What day is your appointment?
 
@Whyohwhy12 most likely the dryness in the corner of your mouth is unrelated, has it gotten worse or stayed the same since Tuesday?

I think if your dentist thought there was an urgent need to act on the chipped/broken tooth, they would have got you in earlier, so it's unlikely to be damaged more now.

What day is your appointment?

The dryness is better now I think -- I can still feel it as a rough spot in the corner of my mouth with my finger, but it's not sore now. Possibly unrelated you're right, just an observation and coincidence maybe as I've never really had it before.

And it's on Tuesday 18th, at 930, so at least I won't have much time to dwell on it in the morning. One more shift at work on Monday. I think that isn't helping matters, having to constantly talk and be around people for 12 hours is so stressful when you've got a tooth like that. But it's not only that one tooth, it's finally coming to terms with everything and my dental situation in general, and being around so many people for so long. I don't know how I've got through this month. I think the relief after that last appointment and just settling into a regular checkup routine is going to be huge. Just like a massive weight off me.

It's annoying because I built up all this adrenaline to go, I finally got over it and went, and then it crashed down when I got told my first appointment to work on stuff was so long away. I wish we'd just got started that week or something. So now I've have had all this time for it to creep back to a baseline anxiety about going, so now I'm starting that process all over again. I got a text this morning from them just as a reminder, and for a moment I thought ''oh god no'', then I realized my teeth are still bothering me, and that anxiety went away.

I'll probably still be anxious as hell the night before and that morning, and I'm a bit apprehensive about cycling 3 miles home after, but overall I just want everything sorting. The anxiety isn't going to win this time, it can't, the irritation and fear of more dental issues is overwhelming any fear/anxiety I have about going. Imagining how I'd cope with the rest of this tooth failing, and having some weird to the gum broken mess there instead, and the fear of losing more teeth...nah, inject me. Drill stuff. Rip out the one that is beyond repair. I don't care. And the fact I've spent 2.5k on this that I don't really have is also a large incentive...
 
Goodluck on the appointment coming up this week. Good to finally start getting the work done you need doing.

I got my root canal tomorrow morning at 9:00am which I'm dreading.
Part of me wishes I just had it pulled but I really dont want to start losing teeth just yet.
 
Hope all went okay, I imagine you won’t see this until you’re done. Mine is tomorrow at 930. Funny how we’ve timed that a day after another.

Maybe I’m just telling myself this and i’m going to absolutely hate the procedures, but the phobia for me was never really about individual procedures themselves, it was just because of the anxiety I felt about the state I’d got to, and letting someone in to see it. Suppose it makes sense as that is what started my anxiety as a kid and feeling responsible for it.

I was just avoiding someone seeing it. Which is a vicious circle as we all know. I had one issue, didn’t want them to see. Then another. Then I got enough done so I could get by in public, but as long as stuff was out of sight, and just slowly chipping away, it was out of mind for 10 years. Even when I damaged my front tooth it was so superficial I didn’t feel the need to get in at all costs. That was the last time I put feelers out to go, but early Covid and having a baby put that on the backburner.

In some respects it’s lucky i’ve had to go through all this stress recently because had this filling not come out and bothered me so much I absolutely would not have been thinking of going to a dentist.
 
Thanks for the good wishes.
It actually wasn’t too bad, just felt like a slightly longer filling.
I’ve had so many fillings in the last 2 years I’m sadly becoming used to them.
Worst part was the rubber dam over the tooth, I panicked a bit initially as it cuts of your breathing a little bit when it’s over your mouth, but I calmed down quickly enough.

Now I have to wait 3-4 months until I have a crown fitted to make sure the tooth settles after the root canal. So I’ve gotta baby this tooth for that long as root canal teeth are a lot weaker after treatment.
 
Sounds like a nightmare having to deal with that for 3-4 months. The stress of knowing i have so much to do and that just time is making it worse is horrible. Doesn't even matter if you have great dental hygiene or not when things have got this bad. That's how I've felt the last few weeks.

My appointment is in like 90 minutes. I haven't even showered yet. I swear to god I fell asleep sat on my computer chair around midnight, and woke up at 5am and that time has flown by, it's 8 now. I'm getting stressed about it to be honest. I can feel myself getting hot flushes and major nerves. I'm also bracing myself for something to have been missed or got worse for some reason.

I can tell I'm getting nervous because what I'm typing is making no sense and I'm having to keep going back and rewording stuff. I suppose I should jump in the shower and get ready to go because I know the next hour is going to pass in the blink of an eye.

I'm also wondering if it's weird to ask if I can listen to music with headphones. For some reason that just feels rude to me but I'm wondering if it'll help. Maybe I'll ask for the next time and just get through this first appointment and ask then if it will be okay.
 
Best of luck for your appointment @Whyohwhy12! A lot of dentists will offer to play music in the background, but if you prefer headphones, it’s not at all rude to wear those. There’s some more info here:

 
I'm back. I nodded off on the chair! While she was drilling too, it was just the rhythmic sound and the TV had some relaxing flying through nature scene and for a moment I completely fell asleep and she gently moved my head back. Crazy, I said to her that she must be good. As I said it was always people seeing it that made me anxious, not the actual procedures really. Didn't feel any pain at all, even the injections were okay to be honest.

She said we've done the worse side but I still have 3 more appointments. They put a temp filling in the molar on the bottom that was bothering me so hopefully that will help. Obviously I'm still numb and all the fillings feel weird, she said they were actually bigger than she thought but set okay, so I guess for now I've just about avoided anything worse there. They had to do a lot of prodding around to get them done so she said I might even be sore for a few days because, in her words, "that one was a beast to do" and I laughed because it was so candid.

I'm a bit apprehensive about how it's going to feel once the numbness wears off, but we'll see. I've got a preliminary appointment for the 2nd of July, I said I'll have to work out childcare so hopefully I can. I just want them all done ASAP now, I probably could have stayed there for the whole day if that was an option.
 
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