• Dental Phobia Support

    Welcome! This is an online support group for anyone with an extreme fear of the dentist or dental phobia. Please note that this is NOT a general dental forum! You can find a list of them here.

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Petrified and embarrassed!

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lashana83

Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2012
Messages
33
Location
Northern Ireland
Hey all, i am so glad i have found this site.. I have been reading some of the posts on here and i must say its making me want to get my act together a lot more and get to a dentist..

I havent been to a dentist since i was 13, i am 29 now.. My last dentist was awful, people used to call her a butcher, she really put the fear into me! Anyways my teeth are in a pretty bad way, they actually started getting pretty bad during my 4 pregnancies!! Quite a few are broken badly and i KNOW that im gonna need these removed!

The state they are in is starting to affect how i act around people and its really getting me down to the point depression is sinking in, the thing is i am so embarrassed about going to see a dentist, I wish i could just walk in and not worry about what they are thinking or what they are going to say but im mortified..:shame::cry:

My 11yr old daughter is at the dentist quite often because she was born with a cleft lip and palate and needs quite a bit of dental work done.. I have never been able to take her in, my husband has to do it!! Im that embarrassed and petrified that even sitting in the waiting room is a challenge... I have 3 other girls and its the same with them.. I get quite angry at myself because it shouldnt be like this, im their mum, i should be the one taking them!

Is embarrassment really that big of a deal or am i just making a mountain out of a mole hill..

Thanks for reading xx Lashana
 
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kittykat

Former Member
Hi,

Embarrassment is a huge deal! It was the main reason why I didn't go to the dentist in a long time. I avoided it because I was so scared what the dentist would think of my teeth, and what he would think of me because I was so nervous!

I finally decided to go when I couldn't eat on my left side of my mouth because it hurt so bad, and after I made the initial appointment, I freaked out and counted down the weeks\days\seconds until I had to go... but then it was the day. I couldn't sleep the night before and I was a total wreck. I sat in the waiting room and my hands were all shaky. When they called my name, I thought I was going to die. But I went and sat down in the chair and it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. I did cry, but once I got that out of my system and they gave me nitrous to help me calm down, it was ok.

The main thing to do is remember that you're an adult now, so you can pick whichever dentist you want to go to, and if embarrassment is your thing, don't go to the dentist your family goes to! It helped me a lot to go to a dentist that no one I knew went to. That way, there was no chance of someone overhearing how bad my teeth were or seeing me tremble in fear!

Once you get past the first appointment, it is a breeze! My advice is to Google dentists in your area, and look at their websites. The thing that was really important to me was how nice the atmosphere was. Once I found one that looked really nice, I called them and asked if I could visit their office first to see if I wanted to go there or not. Then, after I was sure the office was nice and the staff was friendly, I made an appointment. I had to get 9 fillings, and had to go back twice. But, the first appointment was the worst, and then after that it was a breeze! I was comfortable with them and they were very caring. Make sure that when you make the first appointment, you tell them that you're scared, and maybe bring a list to the first appointment of what exactly you're afraid of. I did this and it helped them to know how to help me!

You can do it!
 
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lexi77

Junior member
Joined
Jul 24, 2012
Messages
17
Hi there,

Im pretty new to this site too and the people here are fantastic you get some really great advice not to mention support. Ive done exactly the same as you, my partner always takes my young boys to the dentist too because I couldnt ever face taking them because of my obvious teeth problems. For me also the shame of it all was a massive factor in never getting the courage to walk back through the door.

I dont know if it will be any help but what I did was ask the surgery if the dentist would have an email correspondence with me first before even making an appointment. This gave me the chance to tell him exactly what state my teeth were in and so I didnt feel that it would be a horrific shock when I got in the chair and he saw my mouth for the first time. He reminded me in our emails that as a dentist he is a member of a caring profession and that first and foremost he is there to improve my health and wellbeing not to judge or berate and as his patient he would treat me without prejudice. He also explained to me exactly what would happen during my first time back in the chair and so there was no nasty surprises.

I wont say it was easy, it wasnt and it wont be for a while but I can tell you that there is an immense sense of relief that that first hurdle of letting a dentist actually look in your mouth is done.

As I said Im only 2 appointments into a very long journey of treatment for me so Im no expert but with the right dentist and the support these lovely folks on here give you its all doable ... you really can do it.

take care :)
 
shamrockerin

shamrockerin

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 22, 2012
Messages
750
Location
New Hampshire, USA
It IS a very difficult thing to try and start going to dentists again. I just turned 30, and I hadn't been to one since I was 17. I was forced to go after a tooth w/ a crown on it broke and fell out. When he asked me how long it'd been since I'd been to a dentist, I was so embarrassed. I tried to skirt around the issue by saying "I think I went once in undergraduate" but he just said "Soooo????? how long is that?". I said 8 or 10 years even though I knew it was 12 because I felt ashamed.

We're all here to support each other.
 
B

bigg9058

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 30, 2012
Messages
111
I'm in the exact same boat - I have been to the dentist for a regular visit in probably 12 yrs and only a couple times about 7 years ago to have some fillings in my front teeth for wedding photos.

I have an appt for tomorrow morning and am "petrified and embarassed" about opening my mouth the first time. I feel like no matter how much I try to explain how bad my teeth are the doctor isn't going to believe me. I don't know if I can go through with this...
 
K

kittykat

Former Member
I'm in the exact same boat - I have been to the dentist for a regular visit in probably 12 yrs and only a couple times about 7 years ago to have some fillings in my front teeth for wedding photos.

I have an appt for tomorrow morning and am "petrified and embarassed" about opening my mouth the first time. I feel like no matter how much I try to explain how bad my teeth are the doctor isn't going to believe me. I don't know if I can go through with this...


You CAN do it! The waiting before the appointment is the worst part! I thought I was going to have the worst teeth they ever saw, but they didn't make any disgusted faces or anything! And they weren't in horrible shape like I thought they were. Once you get past the first appointment, it is a breeze, I swear!
 
B

bigg9058

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 30, 2012
Messages
111
You CAN do it! The waiting before the appointment is the worst part! I thought I was going to have the worst teeth they ever saw, but they didn't make any disgusted faces or anything! And they weren't in horrible shape like I thought they were. Once you get past the first appointment, it is a breeze, I swear!

Less than 12 hours to go before I plunk my butt down in that chair! God help me!
 
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lashana83

Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2012
Messages
33
Location
Northern Ireland
Hey everyone thank you for your replies, im going to spend sometime today and have a look at some dentists.. There are 4 dental surgeries local to me but i know people that work in them so they are out lol.. My hubby is going to help me do this, he knows me better than anyone and he knows how big this is for me so he wants to be there every step!

So fingers crossed all falls into place and kick this phobias butt!!
 
R

reallyginny

Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2012
Messages
55
Location
Missouri, US
My 11yr old daughter is at the dentist quite often because she was born with a cleft lip and palate and needs quite a bit of dental work done.. I have never been able to take her in, my husband has to do it!! Im that embarrassed and petrified that even sitting in the waiting room is a challenge... I have 3 other girls and its the same with them.. I get quite angry at myself because it shouldnt be like this, im their mum, i should be the one taking them!

As a mom myself, I wanted to say please don't worry that you're not able to take your girls to their appointments. I have my husband take our son to his dental appointments because I don't want my anxiety and worry to rub off on him. So far he doesn't mind the dentist in the least and it's because his dad is so matter-of-fact and calm about it all. So you're actually doing your girls a service by protecting them from your own fears. :XXLhug:
 
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lashana83

Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2012
Messages
33
Location
Northern Ireland
As a mom myself, I wanted to say please don't worry that you're not able to take your girls to their appointments. I have my husband take our son to his dental appointments because I don't want my anxiety and worry to rub off on him. So far he doesn't mind the dentist in the least and it's because his dad is so matter-of-fact and calm about it all. So you're actually doing your girls a service by protecting them from your own fears. :XXLhug:

Thanks for that, i always feel like a bad mum when i am unable to take them myself.. But i do it for the reason you mentioned, i really dont want my girls to end up like me.. My 4yr old is very shy so she has troubles of her own about going to a dentist already, i really dont want to make that worse!! I dont feel so bad now after reading your post :XXLhug:
 
I

iDent

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 1, 2012
Messages
150
Location
United States
Lashana,

:welcome: Welcome to the forum!

I hope what I'm about to suggest isn't a bad idea (and I am well aware that it might be), but I keep thinking about your daughter with the cleft lip/palate. I know you don't accompany her to dental appointments and completely understand why, but does your husband ever mention how she behaves in the waiting area and The Chair? Having dealt with treatment all their lives, some children with chronic conditions are likely to become more stressed than average, whereas others are almost nonchalant. If your daughter is in the "been there, done that" category, she may be able to help you cope with your dental procedures. I'm not suggesting that she accompany you to your appointments (unless you want her to and, of course, she and your husband/her father agree), but maybe it would be a start to sit down and talk to her in a casual way that wouldn't make her afraid of her own dentist. Something like, "I need to have a lot of dental work done. When you go to your dentist, what helps you through long appointments the most?"

I certainly wouldn't suggest this if your daughter was very young, but if she's 11, she's probably eager to think of herself as "growing up" in some ways. This might give her a chance to develop some real maturity, and could be very beneficial to you as well.

Just a thought. . .if you think it's a bad idea, please disregard and mea culpa! :flowers:
 
Last edited:
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littlestar88

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 15, 2008
Messages
452
Location
England
I just wanted to say don't feel bad about not taking your children to the dentist. I'm sure a lot of my fear came from seeing my mum get so stressed before the dentist and my dad not go at all, especially since although my dentists were often grumpy dental work never hurt. Kids pick up on these things really easily and I do wonder if someone else had taken my sister and I whether it would have made a difference - my grandma didn't mind the dentists, she joked that she could leave her teeth there go and get the shopping and pick them up later! Just wanted to say well done on protecting your kids from your fears, its not easy!
 
L

lashana83

Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2012
Messages
33
Location
Northern Ireland
Lashana,

:welcome: Welcome to the forum!

I hope what I'm about to suggest isn't a bad idea (and I am well aware that it might be), but I keep thinking about your daughter with the cleft lip/palate. I know you don't accompany her to dental appointments and completely understand why, but does your husband ever mention how she behaves in the waiting area and The Chair? Having dealt with treatment all their lives, some children with chronic conditions are likely to become more stressed than average, whereas others are almost nonchalant. If your daughter is in the "been there, done that" category, she may be able to help you cope with your dental procedures. I'm not suggesting that she accompany you to your appointments (unless you want her to and, of course, she and your husband/her father agree), but maybe it would be a start to sit down and talk to her in a casual way that wouldn't make her afraid of her own dentist. Something like, "I need to have a lot of dental work done. When you go to your dentist, what helps you through long appointments the most?"

Hey xx, My daughter loves going to her dentist, her first ever dental appointment was when she was 9 days old, she also attends the dental clinics at the childrens hospital.. She constantly tries to put me at ease when it comes to the dentist, i would go with her and her dad to the appointment but i sit in the waiting room, during that time she tells me how easy it is, what happens and that its nothing to be afraid of.

On one occasion she told her dentist how afraid i was, he gave her leaflets to give to me.. She was helping me yesterday with my online mission to find a dentist that suits me.. She is full of encouragement and has even said she will hold my hand if i need her too lol. She is very much like her dad, knows how extreme my fear is and wants to do all she can to help!

Fingers crossed that with lots of encouragement and support i will make that first appointment and kick butt :D
 

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