Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Why I hate the dentist.

I have never liked the dentist. Never.

Routine cleaning? Horrifying. Fillings? Awful. Can't stand any of it.

I went for a cleaning two weeks ago and they told me I had to come back to get three fillings re-sealed. I have very weak teeth, so when I was younger I had lots of cavities. It wasn't because I didn't brush well, it was just my teeth. So now as I have aged, the fillings need to get replaced every once in a while. I was told at my cleaning that I wouldn't need freezing, they would just re seal. RE-SEAL. NO FREEZING.

I get there today, they tell me I'm in for three fillings. I asked why she said fillings when it was just re-sealing, and I also mentioned that I wouldn't need to be frozen. She told me that no, I was in for fillings and that I probably wouldn't need freezing because they would just be drilling a little. I immediately started sweating, my whole body tensed up, and I just about soiled myself. I asked what it would feel like, and she said that it just feels cold and then a small zing at the end. Dentist comes in (who, I should mention, has been my dentist my entire life and knows that I'm a wuss and that I usually take 3x the Novocain), they start drilling (as I type this I am cringing) and I hung on as long as I could, but then I got a sharp sharp pain that reverberated through my skull and I gurgled some kind of "stop!".

They put in the freezing, and continued. All of a sudden, this searing sword like feeling went up my tooth, into my brain, through my eyes, down my spine, and through my body. My whole body flinched, I yelled, my arms flew around, and they stopped, and I started crying. CRYING. Tears were just flowing out of me and I couldn't stop. I felt like SUCH an idiot, but really, who expects this awful pain AFTER they freeze?!? I can still feel it. I shuddered, squinted, my hands were clenched together. I honestly have never felt that kind of pain.

Then there were two more to go. I won't re-tell the whole story of the others, but they had to go in and put three shots of Novocain in both the bottom and the top of my right side, and two shots in the left top. I have never had a worse experience at the dentist (except that one time at the oral surgeon where they out out a cyst that was in my lip and I had stitches in my face for a week and couldn't smile... that was worse). Half way through the last tooth he switched to a larger drill, and I swear I could feel the vibrations over my whole body. When he was going to put in the 5th shot of Novocain, I apologized for needing more, and my dear old dentist said "it's alright, don't worry, though normally this happens when you're 16, not 24!" and laughed. Awesome. I'm pretty sure that was the first time I've ever cried at the dentist. I told the hygenist that on my way out and she just laughed. I just wasn't mentally prepared for drilling. And the pain. My god the pain. I was frozen until about 4:30 pm (and my appointment was at 11:00). I was just awful.

I don't think I ever want to go back. Maybe I should get that sedation dentistry. Shudder.


lu said...

i am with you 100%. i have a fear of the dentist that is very serious and completely rational and even getting a polish during a routine teeth clean can bring me to tears.

and why are dentists so shocked when someone is afraid of them in their 20's?! it doesn't exactly stop hurting after you grow up!

k said...

i hate to pick on you again lu, but perhaps you should warn her about the sedation dentistry. i seem to remember a phone message from you calling in sick at work that you don't remember leaving :)

and heather, I kind of want to call him and yell at him for laughing at you. that wasn't nice at all. (and after years and years of having his phone number on my toothbrush, i still remember it and could call him up right now if i wanted to)

Heather said...

You should! Meany!

I never was scared of the dentist as a child, which is strange. I think perhaps the whole lip surgery/blood bath turned me.

lu said...

oh yes, when i wasn't really sedated enough for them to start doing anything and then was completely knocked out for a full 24 hours afterwards only to wake up and find NOTHING had been done in my mouth!

i have always been nervous of the dentist, but my fear really took off when i was an adult and had a little thing i like to call 'wisdom teeth taken out whilst partially coherent gone terribly wrong and had to wait to have surgery the next day with my gums flailing open.' it was awful and ever since then, i have minor panic attacks when i even enter a dentist's office or smell the dentist smell.

AND i once had a dentist tell me not to come back to her office because i cried during an appointment. and it wasn't even the ugly cry!! it was a polite, teary cry that i kept in check for the entire duration of her digging around in my mouth. geez.

ok, as you can tell i have some very strong opinions of dentists and dental work and perhaps i should have written this on my own blog rather than hijack yours, sorry!

Sara said...

i had the wonderful job of driving lu to and from the sedation dentist and it was definitely an experience. when we got home she ate a bowl of popcorn but doesn't remember it at all!

Heather said...

Haha that's really funny. Well funny because it wasn't me... I wouldn't be able to handle flailing gums. I'm still traumatized.

lu said...

nope, no recollection of that night at all. which is sort of scary when you think about it.

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