On my journey to a new smile

H

helpmex

Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2018
Messages
40
#1
See my previous post:
https://www.dentalfearcentral.org/forum/threads/fearful-30-year-old.24588/

Hello all,

Welcome to my journal. I have decided to start a journal to document my journey for a new me. I have included a link to my prior posts in the Support forum where I received multiple supports from everyone here.
For those who rather see everything in one place, you can proceed to read the following background information. For those who have followed me through my other posts, you can skip this part :)

It all started when I was 8 years old, where I stopped going to the dentists due to a painful experience. Ever since then I never went back to a dentist no matter how many teeth were breaking, or how many holes I was getting. It got up to the point where I started to have 3 missing teeth, 5 cracked teeth, and holes behind my front teeth. My bottom front teeth are all crooked and they are shifting even more because of the missing teeth. I had a really bad infection and went to a dentist that scammed me of my money. Fast forward to when I was 30 and found this forum, I decided to post my concerns here. Even with all the support, I still never made any appointments. Last month one of my chipped teeth completely chipped off, and that's when I decided that was it. It was very visible, I could not smile, I could not talk, and I could not enjoy myself and be the person that I am. I was very embarrassed of my teeth.

My main fear is of judgement, fear of treatments, and fear of costs. I don't have any fear for pain because I have high pain tolerance. I can handle needles with no issues.

So I made me appointment for 1/30/19. It was with a dentist, highly recommended from one of my family members. Throughout the whole appointment making, the receptionist made me feel really comfortable. I went in, did x-rays, the technician who did the x-rays was not really pleasant so I thought I was going to leave right there. She kept urging the dentist to come look at my x-rays, and that it's better for him come look and all of that. So he came and look at my x-rays, he discussed with me about what was going on with my mouth, as I already knew the consequences. Here are the treatments that needs to be done, total of 7 extractions, 6 bone grafts, multiple root canals, cavities, and he needs to refer to me an oral surgeon to get the wisdoms removed because two is impacted, and one is cracked and not needed. He also recommended braces once everything is done to straighten my bottom teeth and fix my bitewing.
So you can imagine how overwhelming this was for me to hear him say all this to me. I felt like it was going to be a lot of mental stress. He told me not to worry and that he will take care of me. He was very sincere, and he asked me what do I want to prioritize first, and I told him the tooth that is visible at the moment, and he was ok with that. So we scheduled another appointment for yesterday 2/14/19 to start the extractions.

So now about my experience yesterday. He went through the whole procedure with me again, telling me what he's going to be doing, explaining the healing process and what the next steps were. Yesterday's procedure was to do 3 extractions on the upper left top and bone graft on them as well. My insurance did not cover the bone graft, but they were necessary to help me heal for implants. It was $400 USD each. Extractions copay was $50 each and I also requested a flipper for the visible tooth which was not covered. So yesterday's payment was $1700. Scary right?

Anyways, so he started to numb my gums with a numbing gel, and proceeded with the first novacaine shot. Was fine, and I lost count how many times he insert novaciane but the taste was disgusting. So after maybe 2 more novacaine shots I was nice and numbed, didn't feel a thing. I was very tensed because the pressure was insane. I definitely DID NOT like the pressure I was feeling. I felt like I was getting drilled to my brain. Anyways, so while doing the first tooth, there were a few cracking sounds, and he told me to just ignore the sounds, and asked if I needed headphones. I told him I was doing ok. He was literally asking me how I was doing every 5 minutes. So the first tooth is out and he moved on to the next one, again major pressure. I don't know what he had to use but I think he used a saw like thing to split the tooth so he'll remove root by root. He did have a little trouble removing it, but he told me he wants to do it nice and slow so that he won't damage anything and to preserve as much as possible. So the second tooth took a little while to remove. Come the third tooth, the most complicated one. I started to feel pain so I said "ow" and he gave me more novacaine. So he told me that tooth was severely decayed, and that one of the roots have twisted itself and it was very hard to remove. He told me that I'm giving him a challenge, but he says he likes challenges, lol so that kind of made me chuckle a little. He wanted to do another x-ray on that last root just to see what he's working with. Once the x-ray was done, he figured it out, and with A LOT of pressure, he removed it, and the hard part was over. That took almost 2 hours for all three. My mouth was completely sore and I felt the side of my lips was split open from opening my mouth. He then proceeded to clean out all infections or abscess that was there. After it's all cleaned out, he proceeded to do bone grafts on all three. He showed me what was being put up there and explained to me where he got it from and all that stuff. Anyways, after bone graft was done, he sutured my up, and it was definitely a lot of stitches. At that point the novacaine was slowly wearing off and I told him I feel the stitches. He asked if I wanted more novacaine, and I said no because he was almost done. AFTER the stitches, we did impressions for the flipper, which was very gross. I was surprised I did not gag, but I was terrified that my other teeth were going to fall off when he took it out of my mouth lol, but surprisingly it didn't.

And with that I was done. He told me it was a rough procedure, and that I did very good. Him constantly asking how I'm doing, and assuring me, and telling what his steps are made me feel at ease. In two weeks I will be going back to remove the stitches, and he said I can decided if I want to proceed with the next 3 extractions or take a break. I will decide then. I was prescribed ibuprofen 800mg and amoxicillin antibiotics to take. When I got home I was in a little pain. My mouth is sore and felt a little discomfort. I didn't sleep much because I was worried about the pain, or the stitches. Today I feel very sore, slight pain, almost like someone punched me in the face. A little discomfort because I can't really speak nor open my mouth. I am STARVING lol but I've been eating just yogurt and drinking water.

Well that was A LOT of typing, for those who actually read the whole thing I appreciate it. I hope my story will help others with the same fear to go ahead and get it done.

Thank you all again for your support, and I look forward to sharing more with you guys!
 
S

Scared all the time

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 21, 2019
Messages
162
Location
NJ
#2
See my previous post:
https://www.dentalfearcentral.org/forum/threads/fearful-30-year-old.24588/

Hello all,

Welcome to my journal. I have decided to start a journal to document my journey for a new me. I have included a link to my prior posts in the Support forum where I received multiple supports from everyone here.
For those who rather see everything in one place, you can proceed to read the following background information. For those who have followed me through my other posts, you can skip this part :)

It all started when I was 8 years old, where I stopped going to the dentists due to a painful experience. Ever since then I never went back to a dentist no matter how many teeth were breaking, or how many holes I was getting. It got up to the point where I started to have 3 missing teeth, 5 cracked teeth, and holes behind my front teeth. My bottom front teeth are all crooked and they are shifting even more because of the missing teeth. I had a really bad infection and went to a dentist that scammed me of my money. Fast forward to when I was 30 and found this forum, I decided to post my concerns here. Even with all the support, I still never made any appointments. Last month one of my chipped teeth completely chipped off, and that's when I decided that was it. It was very visible, I could not smile, I could not talk, and I could not enjoy myself and be the person that I am. I was very embarrassed of my teeth.

My main fear is of judgement, fear of treatments, and fear of costs. I don't have any fear for pain because I have high pain tolerance. I can handle needles with no issues.

So I made me appointment for 1/30/19. It was with a dentist, highly recommended from one of my family members. Throughout the whole appointment making, the receptionist made me feel really comfortable. I went in, did x-rays, the technician who did the x-rays was not really pleasant so I thought I was going to leave right there. She kept urging the dentist to come look at my x-rays, and that it's better for him come look and all of that. So he came and look at my x-rays, he discussed with me about what was going on with my mouth, as I already knew the consequences. Here are the treatments that needs to be done, total of 7 extractions, 6 bone grafts, multiple root canals, cavities, and he needs to refer to me an oral surgeon to get the wisdoms removed because two is impacted, and one is cracked and not needed. He also recommended braces once everything is done to straighten my bottom teeth and fix my bitewing.
So you can imagine how overwhelming this was for me to hear him say all this to me. I felt like it was going to be a lot of mental stress. He told me not to worry and that he will take care of me. He was very sincere, and he asked me what do I want to prioritize first, and I told him the tooth that is visible at the moment, and he was ok with that. So we scheduled another appointment for yesterday 2/14/19 to start the extractions.

So now about my experience yesterday. He went through the whole procedure with me again, telling me what he's going to be doing, explaining the healing process and what the next steps were. Yesterday's procedure was to do 3 extractions on the upper left top and bone graft on them as well. My insurance did not cover the bone graft, but they were necessary to help me heal for implants. It was $400 USD each. Extractions copay was $50 each and I also requested a flipper for the visible tooth which was not covered. So yesterday's payment was $1700. Scary right?

Anyways, so he started to numb my gums with a numbing gel, and proceeded with the first novacaine shot. Was fine, and I lost count how many times he insert novaciane but the taste was disgusting. So after maybe 2 more novacaine shots I was nice and numbed, didn't feel a thing. I was very tensed because the pressure was insane. I definitely DID NOT like the pressure I was feeling. I felt like I was getting drilled to my brain. Anyways, so while doing the first tooth, there were a few cracking sounds, and he told me to just ignore the sounds, and asked if I needed headphones. I told him I was doing ok. He was literally asking me how I was doing every 5 minutes. So the first tooth is out and he moved on to the next one, again major pressure. I don't know what he had to use but I think he used a saw like thing to split the tooth so he'll remove root by root. He did have a little trouble removing it, but he told me he wants to do it nice and slow so that he won't damage anything and to preserve as much as possible. So the second tooth took a little while to remove. Come the third tooth, the most complicated one. I started to feel pain so I said "ow" and he gave me more novacaine. So he told me that tooth was severely decayed, and that one of the roots have twisted itself and it was very hard to remove. He told me that I'm giving him a challenge, but he says he likes challenges, lol so that kind of made me chuckle a little. He wanted to do another x-ray on that last root just to see what he's working with. Once the x-ray was done, he figured it out, and with A LOT of pressure, he removed it, and the hard part was over. That took almost 2 hours for all three. My mouth was completely sore and I felt the side of my lips was split open from opening my mouth. He then proceeded to clean out all infections or abscess that was there. After it's all cleaned out, he proceeded to do bone grafts on all three. He showed me what was being put up there and explained to me where he got it from and all that stuff. Anyways, after bone graft was done, he sutured my up, and it was definitely a lot of stitches. At that point the novacaine was slowly wearing off and I told him I feel the stitches. He asked if I wanted more novacaine, and I said no because he was almost done. AFTER the stitches, we did impressions for the flipper, which was very gross. I was surprised I did not gag, but I was terrified that my other teeth were going to fall off when he took it out of my mouth lol, but surprisingly it didn't.

And with that I was done. He told me it was a rough procedure, and that I did very good. Him constantly asking how I'm doing, and assuring me, and telling what his steps are made me feel at ease. In two weeks I will be going back to remove the stitches, and he said I can decided if I want to proceed with the next 3 extractions or take a break. I will decide then. I was prescribed ibuprofen 800mg and amoxicillin antibiotics to take. When I got home I was in a little pain. My mouth is sore and felt a little discomfort. I didn't sleep much because I was worried about the pain, or the stitches. Today I feel very sore, slight pain, almost like someone punched me in the face. A little discomfort because I can't really speak nor open my mouth. I am STARVING lol but I've been eating just yogurt and drinking water.

Well that was A LOT of typing, for those who actually read the whole thing I appreciate it. I hope my story will help others with the same fear to go ahead and get it done.

Thank you all again for your support, and I look forward to sharing more with you guys!
Awesome!! Your my hero 😊 I’m sitting here terrified of getting 1 bone graft and implant and you conquered your fears like a trooper!! Ready and heal up you new life’s around the corner!! Keep us posted! 🤗
 
krlovesherkids777

krlovesherkids777

Well-known member
Forum Buddy
Joined
Jul 26, 2017
Messages
1,408
Location
Minneapolis, MN
#3
Helpmex..

I'm so glad you are doing a journal!! This will be so inspiring to others to read of your journey already and as things go along! Sounds yesterday went really well and your dentist treated you very kindly and really was so helpful in letting you know everything .. This is great! I got one tooth pulled the day before and it was a hard one too , the noises were about the worst part and the weird pressure feelings. but just wow.. you were a trooper and so glad to hear all this!!:perfect::thumbsup!::star:
 
S

SolitudeIsBliss

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 14, 2017
Messages
111
Location
Australia
#4
Awesome! You started a journal! Looking forward to reading your journey. It's actually inspiring me to get back to the dentist.
 
H

helpmex

Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2018
Messages
40
#5
Today is day 3 after my extractions. I don’t feel much pain. Only need to take ibuprofen morning and night. Still some slight discomfort on my left side. The one remaining tooth between the extractions feels a little tender and sore. I did eat a little bread and it was tiring to chew. My mouth and jaw got very sore so I’m sticking with yogurt, pudding, and rice with soup.

I keep poking it with my tongue (I know I shouldn’t! But I’m not doing it hard) it’s really weird to feel the stitches. Right now I’m worrying that my bones won’t heal enough to do implants. But time will tell. I don’t think I will do the next three extractions just yet. I think my next choice will be the root canals or cavities. I don’t think I’m ready for another three extractions. Maybe next month I can ask him about the oral surgeon to remove the two wisdoms and the impacted tooth. We will see how I feel then lol.

It feels really weird to feel the empty spaces. But I think I rather feel empty spaces than cracks any day.... I’ll be getting my flipper on Wednesday night so I won’t have to worry about smiling or talking to my customers at work.

I really just wanna get everything over and done with but I know it will take time. So I just have to be patient about it.
 
H

helpmex

Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2018
Messages
40
#6
Got my flipper today and man oh man is it uncomfortable to wear. The good news is that it looks natural besides the gum area so I can’t really smile HUGE. The bad news is it’s uncomfortable and he told me that I shouldn’t wear it that often. Only when I really need to like at work. And that is because my gums are healing from the extraction and bone graft (maybe that’s the reason why it’s uncomfortale) After fitting the flipper it did irritate my gums so I’m back on ibuprofen because I feel slight pain.

2/28 I will be going back to remove the stitches and from there we will decide what’s my next procedure. I told him I’m not sure if I’m ready for another 3 extractions and he told me that he completely understands because it was a very rough procedure last time. I will not think about it too much and by then we will see what my next procedure will be since it will take me 3-5 months to heal.
 
H

helpmex

Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2018
Messages
40
#7
Had bleeding on my last extraction site yesterday twice and it was a lot of blood. Thankfully I have gauze pad at home so I bit down on gauze pad and it stopped the bleeding. I’m feeling no pain but I don’t know what caused it to bleed so much. I’m going in tomorrow to remove stitches so we’ll see what’s going on. I’m just scared that my gums are not healing like it should. I’m done with my antibiotics and I haven’t taken ibuprofen after the first week since I don’t feel any pain. But it’s a little tricky for me since I have high pain tolerance. I could be in pain but just don’t feel it. Just hoping everything is ok
 
krlovesherkids777

krlovesherkids777

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Joined
Jul 26, 2017
Messages
1,408
Location
Minneapolis, MN
#8
Hope it stops bleeding for you soon and everything looks well. Its so hard to tell sometimes I had some super heavy bleeding with my extraction too.. its scary.
 
H

helpmex

Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2018
Messages
40
#10
Just got back from removing my stitches. Told him about the bleeding. He said it’s not fully healed yet. And that with the stitches removed it should start to heal better. Going back in two weeks to see how it is. And then decide what’s next steps.
 
krlovesherkids777

krlovesherkids777

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Joined
Jul 26, 2017
Messages
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Minneapolis, MN
#11
Yes, it IS really scary to see all that blood.. I just went 2 days ago to my post op , its been 2 weeks and its doing really well now, ready for my bone graft in a few weeks. I'll do it end of March. Hope your healing will continue to get better quick!
 
H

helpmex

Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2018
Messages
40
#12
Yes, it IS really scary to see all that blood.. I just went 2 days ago to my post op , its been 2 weeks and its doing really well now, ready for my bone graft in a few weeks. I'll do it end of March. Hope your healing will continue to get better quick!
I don’t know how the prodedure is for bone grafte weeks after extraction. I got my bone graft done immediately after the extractions so I really didn’t feel anything. He’s pretty much just stuffing things in the empty hole lol. Hope all goes well!
 
krlovesherkids777

krlovesherkids777

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Joined
Jul 26, 2017
Messages
1,408
Location
Minneapolis, MN
#13
Good to hear you didn't really feel anything with your bone graft and was pretty much stuffing stuff in. I have heard 3 different ways like bone graft at time of extraction, bone graft after then wait and heal a few months or adding a little bone graft at same time of implant. Its interesting :)
 
S

Scared all the time

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 21, 2019
Messages
162
Location
NJ
#14
Good to hear you didn't really feel anything with your bone graft and was pretty much stuffing stuff in. I have heard 3 different ways like bone graft at time of extraction, bone graft after then wait and heal a few months or adding a little bone graft at same time of implant. Its interesting :)
I’ve heard the same. I think it’s preferable to have it done at extraction but I’m like you if I get it done mine will be after it’s already healed. Believe me I’d have rather had it done all at once I’d would have now been well on my way to healing from it all
 
S

Spider

Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2013
Messages
56
Location
Washington State, USA
#15
yay, I'm so glad you made a journal!!! I followed your other thread and was really inspired by your story and your bravery to take those first steps.

It sounds like everything is going well so far. I hope the flipper is less painful to wear now and everything is healing nicely! Can't wait to hear more xx
 
J

Jen615

Member
Joined
Mar 6, 2019
Messages
23
Location
Seattle
#16
You are very brave to be doing this! Thank you for sharing your journey-I am wishing you the best of luck!
 
H

helpmex

Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2018
Messages
40
#17
One month after extractions. Just came back from my post-op follow up. Gums are still healing. Not fully healed yet obviously. He said another 2-3 months should be completely healed. So we discussed what my next procedure will be. I told him I’m not ready for another three extraction just yet. So he suggested we do the fillings for the cavities. That is scheduled for 4/8. He mentioned one of my tooth have a deep cavity and might need a root canal but said we will see what needs to be done after the cavities. I am a little nervous about the fillings but that should be a piece of cake compared to the extractions I’m sure. He did say my bottom left needs fillings and a couple of my top right and the front teeth. I haven’t had fillings done since I was probably 7 or 8 so I don’t remember much on how that will work.

My flipper is still a little uncomfortable but it’s getting better than when I first started wearing it.

That’s all the updates I have for now. Thanks for letting me share!!