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Venting, I feel like I'll never be okay with a different dentist.

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griffinej5

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 15, 2011
Messages
192
Just a vent about my appointment yesterday. I actually had to appointments. One with my dentist, I go to a dental school, and she was taking more x-rays checking on something, trying to determine if she could do it for her exam or not. It amazes me that she would want to deal with my pain in the ass during an exam. Then I had another appointment with another student dentist for a cleaning. That was the torturous one. My dentist didn't tell me this time when she called me to have me come in before the cleaning that she was going to do x-rays, because the last time I had x-rays, I panicked and gagged for two days beforehand because I was so scared of gagging and vomiting during the x-rays. She's been dealing with me since last September, when I was a crying, shaking mess throughout the entire thing, and I had to tell her not to take it seriously if I cursed her out. She knows I am seriously afraid of certain sounds, and that I will react like it is hurting me. I trust at this point that she will absolutely stop if I want her to stop, or if she notices I'm really freaking out. I also trust at this point that she will not allow faculty dentists to scare the crap out of me when they come over to check things out. At this point I pretty much trust I'm safe, and no matter what I do, she isn't going to get mad at me. She'll just figure out a way to make it work.
So, the new dentist I saw yesterday, she first starts by saying happy Valentine's day. That's the first thing that puts me off. I think Valentine's day is a stupid Hallmark money grabbing holiday. I don't love her, so what the hell? I told her right away when I was putting my coat and bag up, that I was keeping my headphones, and I would turn them up really loud at times to try not to hear the equipment. Whether or not she is fully aware of it, I'm fairly certain my dentist knows when I start frantically clicking the volume button. I'm sure there is other body language stuff that goes with that, like tensing up a lot. I told her that if I don't respond, tap me or something. I'm used to someone who knows that if she needs to tell me something, she should make eye contact and wait for me to turn down the volume, or take the headphones off. Apparently yesterday, I was biting. I've never been told I did that before, but I'd have to ask to know if I did. This dentist kept resting fingers in my mouth, and honestly, I like to bite and chew plastics and certain other textures. I would like to bite on one of the gloves, so I think that's what I was probably trying to do. There are teeth marks in my tv remote, and my iphone case is one of the types with plastic inside, and a rubber outer case. I like to bite that rubber case. I think the way the glove would feel if I really bit it, I would probably really like that. I didn't mean to bite her, but she seemed pissed off about it when she told me I was doing it. Afterwards I noticed I kept slowly closing my mouth to do it, and I kept opening my mouth and stopping myself though. I'm pretty sure it was because she had extra fingers sitting there, and I liked the taste and texture.
I was okay in terms of freaking out until near the end. At one point my dentist came down for a few minutes to show one of the faculty dentists one of my x-rays, which I think helped. I know at points I was very tense, but I didn't completely panic. I told her at the beginning what instrument I was really scared of. I was almost done, and then she had to really scrape at something with it. I just couldn't take it, and started shaking uncontrollably. So then, she stopped and asked me if it hurt. I told her no, it was because of the sound. Then, of all things, she asks me if I want her to start singing. That pissed me off so much. I just didn't feel like she really took how terrified I was seriously. I was tempted to tell her off, but I'm trying really hard not to do that when I get scared at the dentist. I wanted to tell her to go get my dentist. She might have calmed me down, but the only thing that was going to really make it stop was getting it over with.
I just feel like now that I'm not coming in there a panicking mess, I don't know if anyone will take it seriously how scared I am. There was a faculty dentist who I was terrified of for a while because he seemed to get pissed off at my reacting to sounds and things that couldn't have possibly hurt me. I can't keep the one I like forever since it's a dental school. Yesterday just made me feel like maybe, because I'm not a mess anymore, new people won't get that I am still really scared. I worry too that I'll go back to doing bad things to make the dentist stop (like screaming and cursing, or maybe now I'll just bite them). Consciously, I don't want to be kicked out of the dentist like I was once before, but sub-consciously, I know that if I get really scared, there are some sure-fire ways to get myself out of a situation. It also made me worry I'll resort back to screaming and cursing, and maybe now biting, to get myself out of it if I'm really freaking out.
 
carole

carole

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Joined
Jan 5, 2012
Messages
7,538
Location
UK
Well you had quite an adventure, I did have to have a little chuckle at the thought of you harbouring thoughts of having a chew on a rubber glove :ROFLMAO:

Seriously it is like a double worry for you because not only are you dealing with the stress and nerves of the appointment but also having to worry about being rude and cursing.

If you have to see someone new could you perhaps explain to them that you are really anxious and worried and that you may react in the manner described. I have found that the people that work doing out dental treatment understand how unsettling it is to see someone new, and most of them will try to do their best to make us as comfortable.

I was not there but I think the girl that did your clean sounded lovely, she tried with her comments to keep things friendly and try and calm you down.

It is very hard to get dental work, but you did it.

Good luck with the rest of your treatment, your dentist sounds really nice too :thumbsup:
 
Steve In Cleveland

Steve In Cleveland

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Joined
Apr 10, 2012
Messages
551
Location
Cleveland, OH (USA)
There's something very comforting about working really closely with the same dentist through a lot of work. You get to learn each other's rhythms, and your dentist can really learn the little tricks needed to keep you as relaxed as possible.

I went through a long round of dental procedures 16 or so years ago, and then drifted away and ended up with a whole other round of more work over the past year. What I learned is that all the experience I had working with the first dentist made it much easier to establish a trusting relationship with my current dentist, because I understand in detail what I need.

So, I know that I don't mind needles but I need five minutes alone after getting the injection for it to truly numb me. I know that I gag on everything but I do better if I can lean forward a little while having gaggy things done. I know that I hate lying all the way back but if my head's raised a smidge it's okay. I like to have a little running commentary from the dentist about each thing she's putting in my mouth (but I don't want to look at any of them). Etc.

All of which is to say, by being able to tell the dentist what I need, I'm able to control the situation a little better, and I can help the dentist keep me calm (or, I suppose, I can tell if a dentist isn't going to work because he/she doesn't respond to my requests). Hopefully you'll find the same about other dentists you work with going forward.
 
G

griffinej5

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 15, 2011
Messages
192
Well you had quite an adventure, I did have to have a little chuckle at the thought of you harbouring thoughts of having a chew on a rubber glove :ROFLMAO:

Seriously it is like a double worry for you because not only are you dealing with the stress and nerves of the appointment but also having to worry about being rude and cursing.

If you have to see someone new could you perhaps explain to them that you are really anxious and worried and that you may react in the manner described. I have found that the people that work doing out dental treatment understand how unsettling it is to see someone new, and most of them will try to do their best to make us as comfortable.

I was not there but I think the girl that did your clean sounded lovely, she tried with her comments to keep things friendly and try and calm you down.

It is very hard to get dental work, but you did it.

Good luck with the rest of your treatment, your dentist sounds really nice too :thumbsup:

haha... yeah, I know I'm odd wanting to chew the glove. I'm even mildly curious just thinking about how it might react if I did bite it, though my imagination of biting it doesn't involve someone's finger in it.

I'm not quite sure if she was trying to be sarcastic with me, but I think that was how I took it. I'm sarcastic all of the time, but if I perceive someone being sarcastic with me when I'm freaking out, then I don't like them. I can't tell if it's meant to be humorous, helpful, or sarcastic when I'm in that situation, and I don't know if I can trust the person enough.

I used to be much more afraid of needles than I am currently. I've also appreciated recently not needing to tell any doctors or dentists that extent of what I might do in terms of how much I will panic. I used to tell the nurses when I went for any sort of shot to just hand me the trash can, and that I was going to cry, and hyperventilate, and possibly throw up. I used to have to tell them that while I might do all of this, and I may look like I will pass out, that has never happened. It's been months since I have had to give that warning, or anything at all. I figured that I was okay pretty much telling her I was afraid of the noises, and that one instrument. I figured I had covered it with that. I don't remember shaking like that since I saw the endo sometime last year. I don't remember it happening with my dentist for a while. I guess now it has to go back on the list of things I might do. I might seem relatively okay for a while, then just start to shake uncontrollably. I wish I had a better recollection of how this was dealt with when it has happened in the past so that I would know what to tell future dentists to do to deal with it.
 
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