I had some decay on a tooth and put off getting it treated. I know I shouldn’t have, but I’m a coward when it comes to dental care and just have a hard time getting to the dentist. I’ve canceled my last three appointments because I just can’t bear thinking about that drill. I think I made a huge mistake because tonight I bit down on a hard candy and the tooth cracked. What do I do? I can’t believe I did this to myself.
First, take a deep breath. You are not the first person to put off important dental work because of anxiety. There’s no point in beating yourself up over something you can’t change. Instead, we’ll talk about a way to make more positive changes in the future.
Before we do that, though, we need to deal with this cracked tooth. There’s probably extensive decay and it will eventually blow up into an infection. With the tooth exposed, it would be considered a dental emergency. Most dentists leave room in their schedules for patients in situations like yours. They should be able to see you the same day you call.
Best case scenario, the tooth can be repaired. It will very likely need a dental crown. If it’s on a visible part of your smile, make sure your dentist provides you with an all-porcelain crown so it will look natural and you won’t have to deal with a gray gumline. If he or she is a decent cosmetic dentist they’ll already know this.
The Cure for Dental Anxiety
When you’re afraid of the dentist it can wreak havoc on your teeth and your bank account. While a simple cavity can be filled relatively easy, putting off the appointment can lead to more expensive treatments such as dental crowns or even tooth extractions. Then you’re talking about needing to completely replace the tooth.
Dr. Arnold is compassionate about the position many with anxiety find themselves in. It’s not like you can just will your fear away. Because of that, he offers dental sedation. For his severely anxious patients, oral conscious sedation has worked miracles for them.
Now, all they have to do is take a pill and they’re blissfully happy and ready to get their dental issues resolved. Most patients are so relaxed they sleep through the appointment completely. Others stay awake but feel no stress or pain.
Talk to your dentist about his sedation options. Not every dentist offers the service.
This blog is brought to you by Lexington, KY Dentist Dr. Fred Arnold.