• Dental Phobia Support

    Welcome! This is an online support group for anyone who is has a severe fear of the dentist or dental treatment. Please note that this is NOT a general dental problems or health anxiety forum! You can find a list of them here.

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Severe gum recession and loose front tooth


Sandra 88

Junior member
Jan 20, 2022
Horley surrey
i have recently come across this group and I am so grateful to see I am not the only one feeling as I do - I am so petrified of the dentist. I have allowed my teeth to get into such a bad way how can I ever show them to a dentist. I have 3 broken teeth and receding gums and now my front upper tooth has twisted and is loose. I can hardly eat at the moment and hate it all so much. i just know they will say tooth has to come out - I can’t just have a gap there - I just cry whenever I think about it. I just don’t know what to do I know I need help but am so scared
Hi Sandra88,

sorry to read about your situation. Your post is very short, but there is so much panic coming through it. For now, please try to stay kind to yourself and slow down a bit. It's so easy to imagine the worst case scenario and to spiral down in all kinds of negative thoughts. For now: how much lose is your front tooth and since when? And what is it that makes you so scared about the dentist in the first place?

All the best wishes
Hi @Sandra88 :welcome:

Thank you so much for posting here, that must have been an incredibly difficult thing to do when even the thought of the d-word leaves you in sheer terror.

The good news is that there are more and more dentists who are keenly aware of people's apprehensions, and who are keen to help and turn their perception of dentistry around. @Enarete was asking what makes you so scared about the dentist in the first place, and I was wondering the same thing? There can be many reasons why people are scared of the dentist, and it helps to know what the fear is about.

With regards to your fear of being left with a gap and unable to face the world - it is almost always possible to replace a missing tooth on the spot, at least with a temporary solution - so it's unlikely that you would be left toothless.

Anyway, a very warm welcome and thanks for joining :grouphug:
Thank you so much for your reply. My teeth are so bad I just don’t know what could be done. Years ago I went to see a dentist as I had bad toothache. He basically made me feel so bad about my teeth and said i would lose them and nothing could stop it. I have never been back. I only have myself to blame I know. My gum recession at the front is very bad and my front tooth is now loose. I don’t smile properly as I don’t want anyone to see my receding gums. I have 3 broken teeth which again I don’t know what they could do. I plucked up the courage to actually tell my partner some of this after posting on here at the weekend - he was so understanding but I can’t actually show him the true extent. I know I can’t be in denial for much longer but I am just so scared of it all.
I found a dentist near me who I could send a photo so I did and also said about my fears. They have replied saying they could see me for an examination, 2 radiographs, soft tissue check , examination of my gums and also an oral cancer screening - is that normal ? I am now terrified they have seen evidence of oral cancer in the photos - is this a standard thing ?
@Sandra 88 yes, the oral cancer screening is a standard thing - nothing to do with the photos, so no need to panic ?

You said that you explained about your fears - what was the dentist's reaction? It's so important (especially when you have a phobia of dentists) to find someone you get along with really well. So we usually recommend making the first appointment just for a chat.

We've collected some information on how to find a phobic-friendly dentist here:

So I had a call this morning from the dentist’s receptionist. I just cried my way through the call but she was very lovely and patient with me. I have actually booked an appt for 22 march - I am so terrified but I know I have to do this. Apparently I am seeing a dentist who is good with phobic people like me.
Well done @Sandra 88 :respect:

Did you explain that your tooth is loose and that you can hardly eat? Perhaps they will be able to see you sooner... some dentists have cancellation lists, so if somebody cancels, they will let people on the cancellation list know... worth a try if you would like to see them sooner.

Good to hear that the dentist comes recommended as being good with phobic people ?. You might be able to find out more about them by googling for their name, and maybe even find a photo and a description of them?.
@Sandra 88 Hi Sandra like you I am new to this group. Believe me you are definitely not alone with your fears. I am exactly the same as you and I have a friend like it too. We both had bad experiences when we were young and over 40 years later the phobia hasn't left us. In fact it's worse if anything because of our ages. I am going to the dentist tomorrow as my filling fell out whilst I was talking on the phone. I have been absolutely terrified since it happened and had to go to bed because I felt so ill. I burst into tears and had an acute anxiety attack. I feel ashamed of my behaviour but a fear us a fear and when it happens I feel unable to control my emotions. Like you I made my appointment today and the fear of going tomorrow is overwhelming. Please know you are not alone in this and I am going through exactly the same as you today. We are both feeling the same.
Sandra your fears are completely normal for anyone with a phobia of dentists. I am always petrified. However most of the time they are very gentle and its never as bad as we fear . I promise . I tell myself this every time I overcome any treatment but still the phobia overtakes me whilst I anticipate the next check up . You are normal be brave have the check up and take one stage at a time x
@Jackieallen I can so relate to your message. I have a dentist phobia that goes back decades. I am in my 60s now and my teeth are a constant concern to me. The fear of an appointment looming makes me ill. I had to have deep cleaning a few years ago and the hygienist asked me why I was so frightened. I googled it online and was so pleased to read how common it was to have this phobia. You are right about it never being as bad as you think it will be. The last appointment I had was last week when a filling came out. I was absolutely terrified and made myself ill for the days before the appointment. I was glad I went though because there were 2 fillings to be replaced and not just one. It was painless and I explained my fears to the dentist before she began treatment. I try to put it behind me once I am home again but I know I will go through the panic and fear again in the future. It is a phobia that I have no control over.