Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Kick in the Teeth

If you knew me in middle/high school then you know I had braces. I wore those hideous bars of metal from 8th grade until right up before my senior prom. My teeth were pretty awful prior to them and I was not only forced to wear the braces but also had to have 4 wisdom teeth removed and the top pallet of my mouth had to be stretched and broken.

It was not fun.

There are still adverse emotional scars due to this. For one I absolutely despise the dentist. I'll put off going for years if I can. And there is one particular tooth I cannot stand to have touched or messed with. Which is usually the cause of my discomfort and paranoia. It's the furthest molar on the right side of my mouth.

Back when I initially got braces I had brackets placed on all my molars. Since they covered my tooth it was impossible to see exactly what was going on under there. I just hoped proper brushing was doing it's job. Then the day came when my braces and brackets came off. Everything was wonderful with the exception of that one tooth. There was a cavity and when air hit it oh my lord, it was one of the worst pains I've ever experienced. It was packed temporarily and I was sent to a nearby dentist from my orthodontist to have it repaired. It was a terrible affair and I've never shaken it.

Over the years when I'm finally forced to do my yearly cleaning I plead with my dentist to avoid that tooth as much as possible. There is still nerve damage and just touching it causes me to jump out of the seat. I've visited numerous offices and dentists but none have taken my request seriously. Instead I'm subjected to poking, scraping and prodding and when I'm finally done I never return again.

Which brings me to today. The tooth is bothering me again. The last time it started the filling had fallen out. When I saw the dentist I asked them to just pull the entire tooth out. It's caused me so much headache and stress I'd just like it gone. I was told that wasn't a good idea and to salvage it, which I did. I was also warned I'd need a root canal at some point because the tooth had been such a problem. My Mom (in law) told me to try the dentist she is using now. She swears by him and says he will listen to me and take my anxiety about that tooth seriously. She's making me an appointment this week.

Does anyone else out there hate the dentist as much as I do? I'd rather scrub toilets than to let anyone near my mouth with those nasty metal scrapers.


Erin said...

I'm like you, I've had bad experiences and gone from dentist to dentist. Finally after years of our friend of the family telling me to try her dentist, that he's SO wonderful, I thought I'd give him a shot. And I LOOOOOOVE him!! He is absolutely amazing. I still loath going to the dentist, but seeing the faces of him, his hygienist and his assistant puts me at ease. I trust them completely and know they will do an awesome job. They listen to all my concerns and take them seriously and they even give me free toothbrushes for Hailey and advice on her dental care for free! Recently I had to go have a new filling put in when one came out of my back upper right molar and honestly when he told me he was done I thought he hadn't even started yet! I hope you have the same experience with your mother in law's dentist that I did with mine!!

Tania said...

I'm sorry! It sounds painful! I didn't really know what a root canal was until I read a pamphlet at the dentist's office. They made it sound easy and painless, but they still frighten me. I was the only lucky one in my family who didn't need braces and never had a cavity in my life. So I actually look forward to the dentist so my teeth will be really clean. Crazy, huh?

Lawfrog said...

Oh that sounds so awful. I feel your pain literally - I've had braces, retainer, face mask, 16 teeth filled, caps on my teeth, a root canal...yeah, none of it is pleasant ever.

Sadly, dentists often don't believe you about the pain you experience with a tooth or teeth. They think everyone dislikes the dentist and they don't take it seriously. I really hope this new dentist takes your concerns seriously.