• Dental Phobia Support

    Welcome! This is an online support group for anyone with a fear of the dentist, dental phobia, or specific dental fears.

    It's a supportive space to talk to people with similar experiences, and get advice and information.

    Register now to access all the features of the forum.

So scared but ready for a change

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Georgiagirl88

Junior member
Joined
Jan 2, 2022
Messages
8
Location
Victoria bc
Could really use some support right now..

Ever since I was young I’ve dealt with really high anxiety, going to school, flying on planes, and going to the dentist. I remember my parents trying to get me to go to the dentist and it was so bad that I would actually run out of the office and they had to chase me down the street. Now at age 32, I am ready to put my fear behind me and make a change. I am really tired of hiding my smile in every picture and being nervous about meeting new people and what they will think of my teeth. I feel like they are holding me back in my life.

I’ve researched online and found a dental clinic in my area which I feel is a great fit for me, but calling/emailing to make the appointment is super scary for me. I am not scared of pain or procedures, I am more just embarrassed of my teeth and what the dentist will think of me (I think my teeth will be the worst they have seen!) I am missing 3 back molars and can imagine I will need some fillings/root canals as well. Any support or experience you have in making this first appointment will help me so much!
 
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nicole_ts89

Junior member
Joined
Sep 4, 2021
Messages
14
Location
United States
When I was too nervous to call I found a dentist that I could just email instead
 
letsconnect

letsconnect

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Jan 1, 2005
Messages
5,754
Hi @Georgiagirl88 and welcome ?

great to hear that you've decided to put your fear behind you and take some positive steps forward!

As @nicole_ts89 has said, emailing tends to be much easier than calling (well, apart from hitting the "send" button :grin:). I'm not sure if you've seen this, but in the "Downloads" section we have a patient form and sample emails to dentists which may be of help when it comes to communicating your fears and needs to potential dentists?

If you prefer calling to sending an email, but can't work up the courage to make that call, some of our members have "practised" making the phone call out of hours, when they were sure that it wouldn't be answered, just to get used to dialling the number.

You could also ask if it would be possible to come in just for a chat, to meet the dentist (rather than an actual exam). This can take the pressure off, and you can find out if you and the dentist are a good match.

Well done on finding a clinic that looks promising ?!!
 
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Georgiagirl88

Junior member
Joined
Jan 2, 2022
Messages
8
Location
Victoria bc
Thank you so much! I hadn’t seen the sample email and patient forms, this is VERY helpful! Definitely think emailing will be the way to go, and love seeing about having a chat with the dentist rather than going straight into an exam. Thank you again!
 
letsconnect

letsconnect

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Messages
5,754
Best of luck with the email! Keeping my fingers crossed that they're "the one" ?

Let us know how you get on ?
 
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Georgiagirl88

Junior member
Joined
Jan 2, 2022
Messages
8
Location
Victoria bc
Thank you! Well I did it and sent an introductory email! The biggest step I have made in many many years. Fingers crossed!
 
letsconnect

letsconnect

Administrator
Staff member
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Jan 1, 2005
Messages
5,754
That's great news :welldone:

Hope you'll get a positive reply soon ?
 
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pinkjude

Member
Joined
Dec 12, 2021
Messages
26
Location
Croydon surrey
Most dentists have alternative contact details on their website. I emailed mine initally but once I had met them I now ring. I have also rang out of hours and left a message because then they will call you back which also helps
 
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Georgiagirl88

Junior member
Joined
Jan 2, 2022
Messages
8
Location
Victoria bc
Thanks for the reply! I sent them an email and got a pretty quick nice reply, which took me 48 hours to respond to but I did! Baby steps right?! ?
 
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Caz72

Junior member
Joined
Oct 11, 2018
Messages
19
Hi all

I’m a new member although my email address was already registered on here so I must have found this place before and then bottled it

I’ve recently done the same as the OP and emailed a few dentists I got a lot of “we are not taking NHS patients” messages back but one has said they can see me on a semi private basis I’ve emailed back a few questions and just waiting for a reply to that email

I am so scared and have recently had some pain although it’s settled down now I was so ashamed and embarrassed about how long I haven’t been dentist for but it’s a fear like no other I currently suffer with severe health anxiety also general anxiety I’ve had some councelling and have recently started a group of CBT sessions I am so hoping I can get off this and many other fears I have

Thanks for reading good luck to the op I hope you get on ok and I will watch for your progress and well done on the steps you have taken so far ??
 
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pinkjude

Member
Joined
Dec 12, 2021
Messages
26
Location
Croydon surrey
I didnt see a dentist for 3 years following some bad dentistry and was very scared to go again. I had to have a friend go with me the first time else I don't think I would have gone. The dentist I saw was lovely but she retired and I got a recommendation from a friend for the one I am with now. My experience is that if you let them know you are very anxious about going to the dentist they are usually very proud that you have taken the first steps and actually turned up. Also ask to start off with just a check up so you can see if you like them and build up more gradually
 
letsconnect

letsconnect

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Staff member
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Jan 1, 2005
Messages
5,754
@Caz72 - welcome and thanks for (re)joining ?. Well done on tackling your other fears and anxiety, and sorry to hear that you haven't had much luck with being taken on as an NHS patient ?.

In many areas in the UK, the Community Dental Services (this is an NHS service) cater to people with extreme dental anxiety or phobia. It sounds as you may be eligible, as long as this service is available for anxious patients in your area. Usually, you would need a referral from another health professional. In some areas, this has to be a dentist, but in most areas, other health professionals e.g. GPs can also make the referral.

In some areas, waiting areas can be long, so it's a bit of a postcode lottery. Might be worth investigating though?
 
letsconnect

letsconnect

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Staff member
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Jan 1, 2005
Messages
5,754
I sent them an email and got a pretty quick nice reply, which took me 48 hours to respond to but I did! Baby steps right?! ?

That's great news ??? - well done!!

Depending on whether you've already decided on a particular dentist or not, you could also send the same email to a few other dentists who get great reviews or facebook them, and then compare the replies you get. That's what one of our forum moderators did, with great results. I must admit (rather grudgingly ?) that Google reviews have actually become rather good when it comes to picking dentists, with the usual caveats of course (i.e. don't just look at the stars, but read the actual reviews).
 
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Caz72

Junior member
Joined
Oct 11, 2018
Messages
19
Hi Letsconnect

Thank you so much for the welcome ?

I have looked into community dentists my son has Autism so he is registered with one they said if I got a referral they would look at it and see if I meet the criteria But the waiting list is long so I thought I would try and find a regular one with experience with this kind of thing

The email I received back was nice and seemed understanding I emailed back a few questions I haven’t heard back yet from them

Still making very anxious kind of all I can think about

Thanks again ? x
 
letsconnect

letsconnect

Administrator
Staff member
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Jan 1, 2005
Messages
5,754
@Caz72 if you're happy with the dentists your son is seeing it might be worth the wait? It sounds like a lot of "standard" NHS practices have longish waiting times at the moment because of the COVID backlog... maybe you could go on both lists (if you can get a GP referral), just in case there are cancellations - you never know your luck ?
 
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Georgiagirl88

Junior member
Joined
Jan 2, 2022
Messages
8
Location
Victoria bc
@letsconnect yes! I actually emailed them and another dental office, which I haven’t even heard back from! This office I am going with specializes working with patients with anxiety. I have an appointment booked on January 11th with their dental anxiety counsellor and then have my first exam on the 20th where I will have X-rays and a treatment plan put in place. Although I am SO anxious and scared of what they will think, and how I will even walk through the doors of the office, I am weirdly excited to get this started and get my confidence back!
 
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pinkjude

Member
Joined
Dec 12, 2021
Messages
26
Location
Croydon surrey
@Caz72 I took a friend with me on my first appointment and after that was ok strangely because i had confidence in the dentist. 6 months ago if anyone had told me I would have had a root canal started, a deep clean from the hygienist and that I was seeing an endodontist I 'd have laughed because I never dreamt I would have come this far.
Sounds as if you will be in good hands.
 
letsconnect

letsconnect

Administrator
Staff member
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Jan 1, 2005
Messages
5,754
@Georgiagirl88 - great to hear that things are moving forward for you so quickly ?! Best of luck for Tuesday, I hope they are a good fit for you?
 
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Georgiagirl88

Junior member
Joined
Jan 2, 2022
Messages
8
Location
Victoria bc
Went to my first appointment this morning, everyone was so nice that I am going back this afternoon to have my first cleaning (one of 3-4) to get my gums happy. Other than that I need 3 back molars removed and some fillings (no cavities in between my teeth!) and once everything is looking healthier I will be starting Invisalign. The dentist said this is very exciting and that he is proud of me! Thank you for all of the support, it really helped me so much to be able to walk through that door. I’m so excited to start my journey!
 
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