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Overthinking anxiety. Need to stop.

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SallyUK

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Apr 3, 2011
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294
Hi. Need some help managing anxiety/paranoia!

Recent issues with hidden infections/extractions has left me slightly paranoid that things will escalate quickly. I’m catastrophising and it’s really hard to stop.

Reality is that I have restorations in many teeth and things will fail. I was using a teepee brush on friday night and what seemed like a sesame seed came out. I tried to squash it to no avail and I think it’s a tiny piece of enamel or filling from the front of a canine tooth that has a few white fillings that although look fairly scrappy my dentist has wanted to leave well alone.

One of the fillings on the tooth came out late last year and he replaced it. There was another area that seemed to be a cavity or an old filling which he covered with some sort of clear material instead of ‘tidying’/filling.

I think it’s a part of this that has fallen out. Hard to see as it’s next to gumline near space between other tooth and quite stained 😫

Anyhow it doesn’t hurt. I have a check up in a few weeks so thought I would either move it forward as Dentist will check on this area in any case or get a seperate one to check it out.

Explained to receptionist and asked what I ought to do and she said it’s up to you. I moved the check up forward but now I’m anxious that I ought to have got the ‘hole’ checked out sooner. Ridiculous that I can’t think straight 😫

I’m sure it’s fine to wait. Nothing will deteriorate in a week. Even if he saw me ASAP I might have to wait for treatment. It might not be a piece of tooth (I’m not sure) the hole might have always been there? Can it be repaired? As it’s so close to gum I’m assuming it’s tooth out time.

Totally lost the ability to sit things out and not jump on them as an emergency. I know in my heart/head that this is not an emergency and can wait and combining with a check up is sensible. (Cost & anxiety wise) I was dreading the check up anyway 😢

How do others stop the overthinking? Know when it’s anxiety talking and when you should take action? I guess it’s like health anxiety except I do actually have vulnerable teeth that will remain needing frequent work.

Maybe now I’ve made the call and the decision the anxiety will fade & I will be able to feel confident things are being looked at in a week. I’ve got gumline fillings on the whole of that tooth pretty much, so a 3mm missing piece can’t be that bad right?

Feel like a small child just wanting the issues to go away forever. Which obviously they won’t. I dream of being able to be relaxed with things. Have humour even. Accept that restorations will fail and that’s why I’ll be at the dentist over and over.
 
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tazey

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Hampshire U.k
Really wish I knew the answer to this,I guess keeping busy helps (yes coming from me who has zero things to do).
 
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MountainMama

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Sally, I have the same issue, and I don't really have much of an answer either.

Lots of people have cavities/holes for years and the tooth is still saved with a filling. So even if it is part of a filling, or a hole, it hasn't been there long, so it shouldn't be too bad yet.

I am glad you were able to move up your checkup!
 
krlovesherkids777

krlovesherkids777

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"How do others stop the overthinking? Know when it’s anxiety talking and when you should take action? I guess it’s like health anxiety except I do actually have vulnerable teeth that will remain needing frequent work. "

This is an awesome question...!! I'm a catatrophizer myself when I get a new situation especially or something unexpected. I get "used to" my regular or old issues I know of, but anything new that comes up.. my anxiety takes over.. Thank God for this forum and a few great friends I can bounce things off and vent. Venting and journaling helps for me. But I do think putting up appts so you can know is helpful the least amount of time we can overthink possible scenarios the better :).

I hope your appt goes well for you :). and you get some good answers.
 
Dr. Daniel

Dr. Daniel

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Hi,

If you had your last check a few months ago, it is perfectly reasonable to have a second semiannual check up after 3-4 months.
Is that relevant for you?
 
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SallyUK

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Apr 3, 2011
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294
Hi,

If you had your last check a few months ago, it is perfectly reasonable to have a second semiannual check up after 3-4 months.
Is that relevant for you?
Yes - I have check ups every six months. This tooth was also repaired back in November 2018 when a composite filling fell off - the area where I think something has come away is near this area. I am not sure but maybe there is a bit of root exposure as my dentist put some clear material over a dark area when he repaired the composite. The area where I think there is something missing is where this dark line is (which isn't new but more obvious) so I think I have broken a teeny piece of enamel /or its a tiny piece of composite that has come away or some of this material over the root (I'm over thinking, wanting to know the unknowable lol). The tooth is a bit of a mosaic of patchwork at the front but fine at the back.

With anxiety it seems very hard to let the not knowing go and get on with life. I'm fairly certain I am over worrying and it's a simple fix for now, but my mind wont let me think that for long. The truth is, I could have not noticed & I also cant change what the outcome is.
 
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SallyUK

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I get "used to" my regular or old issues I know of, but anything new that comes up.. my anxiety takes over...
This is exactly the issue for me. I have been to the dentist three or four times since End of March when I had extraction and partial denture. Getting used to that new situation and I have done brilliantly. I had to go another time because another tooth with a crown felt loose and sensitive - he said it was root exposure and pasted some stuff on it and all was well. I then had to go back as noticed the tooth next to extraction site had moved and denture hard to get out - again, all was well and he told me he was amazed with my healing.

I did say to him I have so much anxiety about things changing and going on without me knowing and he said, teeth change all the time and there will be something going on all the time! I know he was being pragmatic but until I can accept the lack of control and not knowing when things might destablilise I am braced for another onslaught of treatment. I guess I am not over the horrible five months I had recently and just cant face anything done right now :( I had started to relax a bit and this tiny piece, and I mean tiny 3mm has me saying that now is the time this tooth wants major attention - i am hoping I will be wrong, theres every chance I am. Thank you for sharing your experience
 
Dr. Daniel

Dr. Daniel

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Yes - I have check ups every six months. This tooth was also repaired back in November 2018 when a composite filling fell off - the area where I think something has come away is near this area. I am not sure but maybe there is a bit of root exposure as my dentist put some clear material over a dark area when he repaired the composite. The area where I think there is something missing is where this dark line is (which isn't new but more obvious) so I think I have broken a teeny piece of enamel /or its a tiny piece of composite that has come away or some of this material over the root (I'm over thinking, wanting to know the unknowable lol). The tooth is a bit of a mosaic of patchwork at the front but fine at the back.

With anxiety it seems very hard to let the not knowing go and get on with life. I'm fairly certain I am over worrying and it's a simple fix for now, but my mind wont let me think that for long. The truth is, I could have not noticed & I also cant change what the outcome is.
My guess is that the piece that fell was a composite white filling. You can ask your dentist for a longer term solution.
 
S

SallyUK

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Apr 3, 2011
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My guess is that the piece that fell was a composite white filling. You can ask your dentist for a longer term solution.
thank you for your comment. I am going to do my best to stop checking and thinking about it. I will see the dentist in a week for a check up and to ask about this situation. I appreciate your calm input :)

@Dr. Daniel is longer term a crown? I hope not. (aaargh) I am guessing I can take the option of a composite again - the one that came out last year has been there a really really long time
 
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Dr. Daniel

Dr. Daniel

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thank you for your comment. I am going to do my best to stop checking and thinking about it. I will see the dentist in a week for a check up and to ask about this situation. I appreciate your calm input :)

@Dr. Daniel is longer term a crown? I hope not. (aaargh) I am guessing I can take the option of a composite again - the one that came out last year has been there a really really long time
I don't necessarily mean a crown because I don't know what your clinical situation is. I will tell that though: if your dentist is upping for a composite, ask to have all the old composite removed and from scratch rebuild the tooth, rather than patching new composite with old composite, because old composite does not bind well to new composite.
 
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SallyUK

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I don't necessarily mean a crown because I don't know what your clinical situation is. I will tell that though: if your dentist is upping for a composite, ask to have all the old composite removed and from scratch rebuild the tooth, rather than patching new composite with old composite, because old composite does not bind well to new composite.
Ah I see. Thank you. This may be why he has resisted touching this tooth despite my comments about aesthetics in the past.
 
Judythecat

Judythecat

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No advice, but I really empathise. My take on it is just to sit with the anxiety, and try to find humour in it when I spiral out of control. I had such a bad run in 2017, with constant pain and treatment, then the pain just moving somewhere new, before being diagnosed with neuralgia and “phantom pain” last year that I kind of accept it will always be there.

I also realise I am fortunate. I have an excellent dentist who will slot me in if I need it, and I am not scared of going to the dentist or having treatment.

Last week I felt something odd on the back of one of my front teeth, and within about 30 minutes was convinced it was such a huge cavity there wouldn’t be any filing it, and the tooth would need extracted (despite being a completely virgin tooth). In actual fact, what I felt was a tiny black seed from the bread I had eaten earlier, lodged just under the gum line. I actually laughed out loud at my own ridiculousness.
 
Enarete

Enarete

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Hi SallyUK,

your post is a bit older and it sounds like your check-up is on Monday so if you got it that far and managed to distract yourself or not get crazy about the situation, that's good.

To put a different perspective on things: I believe that you decide what is an emergency and if a problem is bothering you to a point of overthinking every day, then this is a good reason to schedule to be seen earlier. You mentioned somewhere above that this is definitely not an emergency and you were obviously looking for ways to change your way of thinking and being anxious. Well, given your anxiety it sounds as an "anxiety-emergency" to me and if a visit to your dentist to have it looked at has the power to keep your mind at ease and make you calm down, then the only right thing in terms of self-care would be to do exactly that.

Of course there is the point of whether the problem will get bigger if you wait and most likely it won't, but if you are phobic then this approach will be probably as successful as telling a phobic to stop being afraid of the treatment, because it most likely will go well.

Again, I understood that your decision was to wait, but just wanted to encourage you to schedule an appointment if anything gives you so much anxiety. In my experience it's the best thing to do and and your dental team will be ok with that too (as long as you don't insist on coming in five minutes before they close on Friday and then present them with a problem that happened months ago demanding to get it treated now and then)

All the best wishes and keep us posted
 
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