wibu- dental surgery

(19 Posts)
hailstoneslikegardenpeas Fri 29-Apr-16 22:30:54

I have namechanged for this as I think DH knows my usual posting name and I would rather he didnt stumble across this

Background
I am genuinely dental phobic. Or to be more precise about it, dental surgeries, dentists, people putting tools and fingers inside my mouth, and the biggest one of all needles. It all stems back to when I was a child and I didnt want a filling done so the bastard of a dentist got one nurse to hold me down, one nurse to hold my head in a vice like grip while he did the injections, drilling and filling. With me screaming. I still have flashbacks to it now, and yes, I have had counselling and cbt.

Its taken me a very long time to be able to get a grip on myself to be able to take my dc to the dentist. Its taken me even longer for me to get to sit in the chair. Looking is fine, anything else I get sedated for. Including check ups

Status quo.
I need dental work done. Im shitting myself about it, but I cant ignore the crumbling tooth anymore, or the fact that it fucking well hurts. Ive been ignoring it for the best part of a year now hoping it will go away but it wont. I've already asked the dentist if he will perform a full extraction but he is saying I am too young for this option (I'm mid thirties) and it would not be an option he would recommend on psychological grounds.
All dental work is done under sedation for me, however the waiting list for NHS dental work under sedation in my area is approx 18 months.
So I do it privately.

However the quote for the latest round of work I need doing is around £500. it isnt just the crumbling tooth that needs doing as the last time I visited the dentist was 6 years ago.
I do work, but this is only part time, freelance work. One of the dc has special needs (medical) so I am unable to work fulltime. The understanding I have always had with the husband was that I stayed at home to look after the dc, and he would deal with the family finances.

However he is refusing point blank to pay the latest dental bill. He has told me that 'I just have to get used to' having the work done unsedated, and once your mouth is numb you wont feel a thing anyway. This is just fuelling the phobia. It fucking hurts to chew, I dont want the work done, however I need it done. And I cant have it done. There is just absolutely no way I would be able to walk in there, sit down and have it done. And unfortunately this time cbt isnt going to have much effect as it takes time that I dont have for it to work.

So wibu? DH for telling me to grow up and get over myself (yes really), or me for being so utterly stupid about something that millions of people dont have an issue with. This is why I want a full extraction. No more teeth issues.

Mrsmorton Fri 29-Apr-16 22:38:02

DH is being a dick.

You don't want a full clearance of teeth. I promise you that you would regret it. Not only that but I would be very surprised if a dentist would do it, ethically it's not in your best interests and your phobia is changing your decision making process.

Can you set up a payment program? I'm quite shocked your DH is being such an arse.

TeaBelle Fri 29-Apr-16 22:40:19

Some people are scared of the dentist. There are certain things they don't particularly like/enjoy, but with some rational thinking they can get past it.

Then there are those with genuine phobias. I don't think those people can 'get over it/get a grip'. Personally I think you are likely to do more harm than good to your phobia if you try to just have the work done unsedated

IWILLgiveupsugar Fri 29-Apr-16 22:47:36

The money belongs to you as much as to your h - don't let him undervalue the massive contribution sah makes to his ability to work and how much you are saving the family in childcare costs. Refusing you access to that money for something that you need is actually abusive behaviour and as such is in ltb territory. You are not choosing to feel this way. He is being a dick.

The question is, what are you going to do about it? This really would be deal breaker behaviour for me. As for the dental work, I woild put it on a credit card (preferably one for which he is the primary card holder) and tell him the choice is not his.

pearlylum Fri 29-Apr-16 22:53:08

Could you speak to your GP and maybe get beta blockers for the prodecure?

Guessinggame2016 Sat 30-Apr-16 09:59:16

I had a wisdom tooth out under sedation on NHS, just in dentists office - although I did have to go to a different dental practice, no wait though. I rang 111 and they made me the appt.
The other three I had out in hospital under GA, think I waited 4 months in total - it's not fair how different areas have such different waiting times.

IceMaiden73 Sat 30-Apr-16 10:05:45

As an aside, can you as a family afford the £500? Is DH issue that you just don't have the money?

hailstoneslikegardenpeas Sat 30-Apr-16 10:23:33

Thank you all for your replies so far

I already have and use beta blockers. That's usually what I take just to get through the door.

The money isn't an issue. Without going too far into it, our family income is above the cb threshold. Dh just has a thing about 'frivolous' spending (which he sees this as) and is often loathe to spend out on 'extras'. Its a throwback from when he was a child and was effectively left penniless after his father died. He used to be a lot worse like his mother still is but has sorted himself out big time since I have known him.

potoftea Sat 30-Apr-16 10:45:19

This thread is making me so angry OP. How dare your dh make you feel shit about a phobia. If you're like me you already hate yourself for being pathetic and stupid and weak (none if which you are, but that's how it feels), and he makes you feel lower!
My phobia means that I stopped eating and sleeping properly before eventually making an appointment in tears. It cost almost 1,000 euro here for the sedation and work, but it was essential spending. I'd prioritise it ahead of holidays, Christmas dinner, seeing friends. If my dh hadn't supported me and said I was unreasonable, I would have used the credit card, and our marriage would take a long time to recover.
Marriage is about trust. Your dh doesn't trust you to make a decision about your mental health and that's worrying.
Get your teeth sorted by whatever means necessary. You'll feel stronger and more able to tackle life afterwards and then address his lack of respect for you.

DoughNut12345 Sat 30-Apr-16 11:07:15

When you say full extraction do you mean you've considered a full clearance? And what?.....have full dentures for the rest of your life? Doesn't sound like you'd let a dentist give you implants so dentures would be your only option. But over time your bone resorbs and your ridges would become virtually flat making dentures a complete nightmare to wear.
As you're so young you're gonna have to get over your phobia somehow, or under control at least. You could try mild sedation in the form of Diazepam before your treatment ( couple of tablets) with hypnosis in the chair. More and more dentists do this but it takes up a lot of time, so of course there is the price to pay ( and of course not on the NHS). But hopefully you'd only need it short-term until your phobia was more cope-able with.
Whereabouts in the country are you in? My practice does hypnosis and diazepam and it works, believe me. We're in Surrey.
You need to be strong and take control of your phobia and let the dental team help. When you've got the immediate work done see a hygienist and get to grips with looking after your teeth AND gums, attend EVERY 6 months and have regular x-rays and hopefully you won't need any more major treatment. Prevention is the key after you've (hopefully) sorted your phobia out. Watch the sugar in your diet too.
You can Google other practices in the country and see if they do hypnosis and similar therapies. Another place I worked in did acupuncture. Read reviews about that practice and see what other patients think. Good luck....

DoughNut12345 Sat 30-Apr-16 11:10:47

And be brave....flowers

Alexa444 Sat 30-Apr-16 12:06:47

Can you not still ask for referral to hospital to have things done under general? I had that done a few times but have since had to suck it up and manage my phobia as I just don't have the money for it.

TwentyCupsOfTea Sat 30-Apr-16 12:14:13

I have sympathy. I needed a wisdom tooth out but the sedation list was so long I would not have been able to wait (nearly 2 years and I was in agony with near constant infections). There is no way we could have spent 500 to have it done privately, and I would have been loath to do it even if I had had the money, as I would have seen it as a huge cost that wasn't really nevcessary. Trust me this is coming from someone who used to cry even during the looking part. Mine stemmed from a bad experience as a child too, being pinned down and told to lift my hand if I needed them
To stop. When I lifted my hand they pushed it back down and continued - very traumatic.

However, since I had no option but to have the tooth out awake I did it. It wasn't pleasant at all but I was so proud of myself after and I can honestly say having done of my phobia is now cured after years.
500 is so much money to spend on something that isn't strictly nevcessary. I'm sure I'll be flamed for this but I think your h might be right.
You might find that doing it awake does great things for you. I would reccomend doing it in hospital rather than the dentist, the whole feel of the place is different and so clinical and professional, I found it very reassuring.

toastandbutterandjam Sat 30-Apr-16 12:31:50

You have my sympathy OP. I used to be exactly like you. I couldn't even walk through the door at the dentist because I was so scared. I had an awful experience as a child (I wont go into it) but it left me petrified.

I desperately wanted orthodontic treatment but couldn't because I refused to visit my usual dentist.
I ended up with no choice but to get my tooth removed whilst I was awake because I was scared of sedation (lack of control issues etc).

I've now had three teeth pulled (two for orthodontic purposes) and i'm okay at the dentist. I still stay awake all night the night before and can't relax, but I am much better.

Everyone thought I was so odd being so scared of the dentist. All I got was "get a grip. It's just the dentist" and silly comments like that.

This is a phobia. Not something you can just "get over". It took me years to overcome it with specialist therapy and medication.

I'm now awaiting some very extensive orthodontic treatment, something I never thought I would be able to do. I really hope things get better for you and you manage to get your tooth sorted as soon as possible. Tooth pain is awfulflowers

Mrsmorton Sat 30-Apr-16 12:36:07

Yes, it's important not to minimise a phobia. You can't just get a grip generally although I have treated some true phobics as emergency patients including extractions. It just takes a long time which is difficult in a business (which NHS dentistry is) as it doesn't pay the overheads.

There are some ways to overcome it using desensitisation but again, they take time. Sometimes dental hospitals will do them, not always.

Op, please don't have all your teeth removed. Get rid of the problems (under sedation or GA) and then perhaps think about overcoming your phobia.

FurryDogMother Sat 30-Apr-16 12:53:34

I was so phobic I didn't go to the dentist for 39 years! This all changed last year when one of my dogs accidentally knocked out one of my front teeth, and I was left with a very noticeable gap. I felt I had no choice but to go to the dentist - but I also went to the doctor, and was given 10 mg of Valium and a couple of Stilnoct to get me through each appointment (still am, it's an ongoing process). I also took a friend along with me to (literally) hold my hand throughout, and make sure I didn't do anything too daft whilst under the influence. I've now had one filling replacement, an extraction, an impression and a denture fitted smile The drugs really do make a difference, as does having a sympathetic dentist.

My dentist is a private one (I'd got to know him through taking my Dad for his appointments there, which made it easier), so it's not cheap, but very much worth the money to be able to smile with confidence for the first time in years - not to mention being pain-free. Your DH is being very unfair - if you get sedation (you don't fall asleep with what I take, you just float about a foot off the ground) from your doctor, that's the 'extras' covered, and then you'd just be paying the dentist for the essential work, no?

I'm still not keen on going to the dentist, but right now one of my back teeth is playing up, and I think it needs to come out - so I've been to the doc and got myself some more pills, and am off to see the tooth man soon - the more times I go, the easier it gets - he has yet to hurt me at all, not even when doing the injection (am a needle-phobe too).

I'm very lucky in that both my DH and my Dad are very supportive of my issues with various medical procedures - your DH needs to find some empathy from somewhere - you are so not being a baby, a phobia is a real thing that you can't just decide not to have when it becomes inconvenient. Wishing you the best of luck - it really is possible to reduce your phobia, but only with help, understanding, and support from those close to you.

hailstoneslikegardenpeas Sat 30-Apr-16 13:26:54

Thank you all for replying again.

Thanks to a combination of counselling and cbt I did have a handle on it for a while- enough of a handle to be able to take my dc's to the dentist and be in the room when one of them needed a filling done. However thats all gone out of the window now and I am back to the start.

As for the referral to hospital, there is an 18 month wait for this sort of work in my area (not Surrey unfortunately). Usual story of too many people wanting what just isnt available in a reasonably large city.

I have been sedated for dental work before at the dentist- 6 years ago blush and a few times since for check ups. The usual score is beta blockers just to get in the chair, them a mix of oral/IV midazolam until I no longer have any awareness of where I am or whats going on. Apparantely the last time I was sedated I spent a whole hour asking over and over and over and over again for one of my dc.

There is absolutely no way I am having anyone near me when I am aware of what they are doing. No way whatsoever. No drills, no fingers, no needles. no instruments. I would rather suffer than have anyone come near me. And yes, I would almost certainely bite the dentists fingers if they went in my mouth.
The needle phobia goes beyond dentistry though- I generally need sedation/entonox for any procedure involving needles.

The dentist I use is known in my area for treating dental phobic patients. And has a desensitisation programme. Which I have already booked myself onto when I can get a grip on myself long enough to sort the current issue out.

LittleCandle Sat 30-Apr-16 13:49:36

I have had several horrific experiences with the dentist, starting as a child. I have now found a wonderful dentist who is very kind and understanding. I had 12 years where I didn't go near a dentist, and finally had to when I developed an abscess. I had not long moved house and didn't know any dentists where I lived and none of them seemed to be taking NHS patients.

Long story short, I do manage to attend every 6 months, and every single time, I am sweaty, trembling, nauseated and am left utterly drained and wrung out afterwards. I try and schedule every appointment on my days off, as going to work afterwards is tough as I am so traumatised.

I wouldn't advise going for full extraction. I got a partial plate made for my bottom teeth after a botched removal of an infected tooth caused the same tooth on the other side to develop severe problems. Coupled with a space further back in my mouth, I agreed to a plate (as it was free). I found I could not tolerate it at all. I could barely speak with it in, I certainly couldn't eat with it and this alien intruder in my mouth was the only thing I could think of while wearing it. I eventually ditched it. You barely notice the gaps, as my ultra-wonky front teeth now have space and have gradually moved to a much straighter position and the gaps have shrunk.

I think your DH is being an utter wanker in his attitude. Tooth pain is horrendous, and made even worse when every visit to the dentist is torture on its own. People who have never suffered from this find it utterly inexplicable. I used to take the DC and often had to leave the room while they were being treated. DD2 had to have teeth out at the dental hospital for braces and one was quite tricky and she wanted to hold my hand (even at 15!). I held her hand, with my back turned to her and my other hand covering my mouth as I retched and retched! When the tooth was out, the dentist sat me down, gave me a sick bowl and put my head between my knees. DD2 was fine...

I hope everything goes well for you. I feel for you.

RedOnHerHedd Sat 30-Apr-16 14:11:41

If money isn't a problem, take the money out of the bank and get it done. You can deal with DH's twattishness after you've had the work done that you require.

I have a phobia of dentists and it's real. You can't just grow up and get over it.

It's your money too. Spend it on what you need. Fwiw, £500 isn't that expensive for what you're having done. Go and sort your teeth out. flowersflowersflowers

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