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Is there an alternative to injection at the dentist?

(25 Posts)
GinBunny Tue 05-Jul-16 22:10:20

I suffer from multiple phobias. After an awful experience going to the dentist became one of them. This was 7 years ago and I haven't been since, until today. I knew that after this length of time there was a good chance I would need treatment of some kind and I'm happy to say that's not the case. However, 7 years of plaque build up needs to be removed and the dentist has told me I will need an injection as it will hurt. Needles are another of my phobias, in fact one of my major phobias and there is no no way I can have an injection in my gum. No way. There must be an alternative I can ask for? My GP is going to prescribe diazepam to get my anxiety through it but that's not going to help with the pain! Help!

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Tue 05-Jul-16 22:11:47

Last two fillings I e had done ive had done without any anaesthetic. So no Injection. I also have a big needle phobia. It's no way near as bad as I thought it would be without anaesthetic.

VimFuego101 Tue 05-Jul-16 22:12:03

My dentist puts numbing gel on before the injection. He is also really good at doing the injections - I honestly don't feel it most of the time.

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Tue 05-Jul-16 22:12:32

You can get stuff done under sedation but not every dentist does it so you may have to be referred.

NataliaOsipova Tue 05-Jul-16 22:13:08

How much will it hurt? I'm not phobic - I just think the injection is the worst thing about having a filling. I always ask them to do it without! I don't have a great pain threshold either. Have a chat with the dentist.

BluePitchFork Tue 05-Jul-16 22:14:20

I hate getting local anasthetic.
for a filling or clean&polish I go without. for me the short unpleasantness is nicer than the unpleasantness of the injection plus the horrible numb feeling for hours afterwards.

SmileAndNod Tue 05-Jul-16 22:15:03

Would definitely go with the diazepam for the anxiety. Sounds odd but when I needed a filling and couldn't have an injection I used kind of hypnosis techniques I learnt for childbirth - and I'm not a brave bunny at all. It strangely worked.

TigerBreadAddict Tue 05-Jul-16 22:15:50

Some dentists use a Wand which delivers local anaesthetic at a computer controlled rate which is much more comfortable, and rather than injecting through your gum you can have it delivered between the gum and the tooth, in the crevice, so no piercing.
Inhalation sedation (nitrous oxide/gas and air) is a good option as it relaxes you and helps with pain.

YesThisIsMe Tue 05-Jul-16 22:20:32

Have you tried Diazapam before? A combination of sedative and numbing gel might enable you to get through the injection?

PollyPerky Tue 05-Jul-16 22:29:51

You don't have to succumb to an injection.
Is your dentist doing a peridontal clean? That means going right under the gum line. It might be uncomfortable but I think you could manage it.

My dentist likes to use breathing techniques - similar to hypnotherapy - so maybe you need to find a dentist who works with anxious patients and is more accommodating?

I've not have any injections for work done in many years including re-filling of old fillings. They are offered but I refuse as I find the pain afterwards from the injection site worse than the pain of the work!

GinBunny Tue 05-Jul-16 22:50:31

Thanks for all the replies. I have had diazepam before, to get me through an MRI (add claustrophobia to the list). I had a panic attack during the first appointment and used diazepam the second time.

I have paid a deposit so can't go anywhere else so perhaps I should just go and talk options once there - annoyingly today I had the last appointment which I was late for so there wasn't really time to discuss it. I have seen this dentist before and she was very gentle and good with what was then just nerves, when I went back she had gone on mat leave and it was the cover that left me traumatised. It was only a clean, yes Polly, it sounds like peridontal although I didn't know that was what it was called, and I came out in tears, pain and lots of blood.

I wonder if they would allow me to use my headphones, I have a meditation app that might help with the diazepam. I'm getting in a bit of a state this evening just thinking about it!

BluePitchFork Tue 05-Jul-16 22:54:04

headphones&app is a good idea

gingeroots Wed 06-Jul-16 09:24:02

My latest dentist put cotton wool pads on my gums before the injections.They had numbing gel on them and I didn't feel the injections .

I believe it's possible to give injections that the patient doesn't feel .

ArmfulOfRoses Wed 06-Jul-16 09:33:53

I'm not phobic but obviously injections aren't my favourite thing and I tend to get in the chair, open mouth and screw up my eyes so I can't see what's coming.

The last time, I'd had my mouth open for so long that I had jaw ache so I said to the dentist can you please just touch my arm when you need me to open up for the jab and she'd already done it.

It really is possible for it not to hurt.

Best of luck flowers

charliethebear Wed 06-Jul-16 09:42:39

It depends whether your having a scale and polish or a root clean? If its just a scale and polish you could try without anaesthetic as most patients are fine without however if its a root clean then it will hurt, so whilst you can try without a painful experience might make your phobias worse.
I would let your dentist know you are phobic and ask for topical anaesthetic first. If your dentist is good you shouldnt even feel the injection. Lie back, close your eyes and focus on your breathing. And definitely use headphones/app etc. If they help. Chances are you might not even know they've done the injection.

ILostItInTheEarlyNineties Wed 06-Jul-16 09:50:42

There's no harm in trying to have your dental work done without an injection, it can always be stopped if you can't cope with the pain and the injection then given. It works immediately.

Some dentists prefer you to have the area anesthetised if you are likely to fidget or pull away and make sudden movements if you experience pain.
Everyone reacts differently to low level pain. I can usually zone out for a while.

Good luck. Don't be afraid to voice your fears with your dentist. They see phobias like yours all the time.

PollyPerky Wed 06-Jul-16 11:55:57

No one enjoys a scale and polish- it can feel a bit painful BUT my hygienist always says if I want her to stop raise my hand. Knowing you can do that and have a breather helps. I usually ask to rinse out more often than they suggest just to get rid of all the bits.

GinBunny Wed 06-Jul-16 23:55:27

Thank you for all your suggestions. I've already mentioned to the dentist that I am phobic and scared (and felt about 5 years old!) and I will definitely bring it up again at the appointment. And yes, if it gets too much I can always ask her to stop and if I have to make a second appointment then so be it. I do feel like I need to face this and that this is the time too, I just hope it doesn't end up backfiring and embedding my phobia!
I'll report back next week after the appointment thanks

MountainDweller Fri 08-Jul-16 00:18:14

My hygienist uses numbing gel over all my gums when I have a cleaning. I have very sensitive teeth and am a wimp about dental stuff. I also take something for the anxiety which helps ( not much because I have to drive there!).

sadie9 Fri 08-Jul-16 00:45:59

A couple of paracetamol before you go will also reduce any discomfort by a decent amount.

GinBunny Wed 13-Jul-16 23:44:13

Hi again, just wanted to come back with an update and to thank you all again for your suggestions. The appointment was after work today. I took propranolol last night and twice today as they are supposed to help break the panic attack cycle, then paracetomol and 5mg diazepam half hour before the appointment. I'd decided to go for the injection, figuring short term pain long term gain. When I got there we talked through options briefly which basically consisted of 1 injection and half done then a second appointment or 2 injections and try and get through it in one go. I said we'd try and get through it in one if we could. So, she gave me some numbing gel, picked up the needle and I completely freaked out.

We agreed on no injection and to just see how it went, option open to change mind at any point. And I got through it- go me!!

It wasn't pleasant, I focussed on my breathing, stopped her many times so I could get myself together and am ashamed to say that at one point she didn't stop quickly enough and I pushed her hand away blush

But here I am, feeling a bit sheepish but also very very relieved flowers

passportmess Wed 13-Jul-16 23:49:51

Well done you!! My husband is needle phobic and has fillings without local anaesthetic. Great that you've had all that cleaning done. star Gold star for achievement!

GinBunny Thu 14-Jul-16 00:11:06

Thank you Passport! I'm just so relieved that all I needed after all that time was a scale and polish. Has reminded me of this from my childhood days grin

DiddlySqeak Thu 14-Jul-16 00:28:30

That's good that you got through it. flowers

Did you get a chance to chat about the plaque build up. I've got crook teeth but don't get plaque build up as I use a sonic toothbrush and floss and brush at least twice a day. I carry a toothbrush with me when I'm out. My teeth are always squeaky clean.

I knew some people struggle with plaque despite their best efforts though.

BluePitchFork Thu 14-Jul-16 07:13:46

very well done!
I very proud of you.

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