Nervous patient “Why didn’t I do this sooner?”

This is to all you phobic people out there….I was the worst case of being phobic at the dentist, not only the dentist but also of needles! It used to take me over a year to pluck the courage up to even book an appointment just for a check up and even at the check up I’d pass out, if any work needed to be done it had to be through sedation, that’s the only way anyone could get near to me! My last trip to the dentist I had the maximum IV sedation and even with this I was unconsciously fidgeting too much for them to deal with me, I managed the 1 filling but needed more work done, they refused to have me back…..I’m sure a lot of you can relate to this? That horrible sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach, the feeling of being totally out of control, the invasion of someone intruding in your mouth, the fear of feeling any pain, the hot sweats of sheer panic!
I would of given anything to be brave enough to attend the dentist and have work done like most people…..well, good news, after 40 years of phobia, that has now been possible due to joining the High Street Dentist at East Grinstead. I went along for a check up (only the mirror is allowed anywhere near my mouth) with a lovely patient Dentist Nicoletta, and her equally friendly assistant. There was no rush and everything was talked through. Nicoletta has been the first dentist ever that has asked exactly what scares me and has worked with me to overcome this.
I needed 1 filling done, just hearing that felt like the whole world was closing in on me again…..I downloaded Paul McKenna hypnotherapy CD to overcome Dentist Phobia and listened to this regularly but not convinced it was working, I went to the doctor to get some Valium, I loaded my MP3 player with lots of songs and even put an ice pack in the freezer ready (that hot wave that flows over you is not nice is it?)….the day arrived, a bit quicker than I wanted!
Firstly it was an afternoon appointment and Nicoletta booked me a longer slot than was needed so it wouldn’t be rushed. The normal sinking feeling wasn’t there all morning but when I was walking towards the dentist I realised the Valium just wasn’t working and I can honestly say I had every intention of coming home without the treatment being done!
Nicoletta called me in, and although I told her I wasn’t ready, she was very friendly and just said we’d chat only and there was no pressure, she made sure all equipment was out of sight before I went in.
We agreed between us that we would do it in small bite size pieces, the first piece was the numbing, being scared of needles this was a big deal! Nicoletta had a very calming influence over me and eventually I trusted her enough to let her do this, afterwards I didn’t know what all the fuss was about, I was so pleased with myself that I’d got this done but where I’d got so scared, the reaction of it was that I come over very feint. This wore off after 5 mins and I was back to being calm again. Next step the drill….well when I say it felt like she was tickling the tooth, it’s no lie…..she done it for 2 seconds only so I knew what to expect, after that I blasted my music out and let her carry on, all the time her assistant was holding my hand all the way through, before I knew it, it was done and finished. It now feels like a great weight has been lifted and I feel invincible!!!!!! The whole time I was in there seemed to fly past but in fact I was in there 1 hour, the treatment was probably 10 mins or so, this is how patient and understanding the staff at this dentist are. I trust Nicoletta completely with my teeth now and know that there really isn’t any pain at all, obviously I’m still going to be nervous, you can’t wipe out a phobia overnight but I now feel in control so if any of you can relate to this phobia, get a hypnotherapy CD and book in at the High Street dentist, afterwards you’ll look back and ask yourself “why didn’t I do this sooner”

Debbie from East Grinstead

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