I would say I’m sorry for the hiatus, but I’ve been out living life (and having a grand time doing it) so I don’t feel that bad about taking a blogging break–more details on my awesome adventures in a later post. 🙂 However, not every adventure since my last post has been awesome. Take, for example, today’s adventure–the dentist.
I have had dental anxiety for as long as I can remember (and apparently before then). My mom told me I had to be sedated at the dentist’s office as a child because I kicked, screamed, and fought. My memories consist of tears, sweating, and an overwhelming feeling of panic. This anxiety haunts me to this day. Literally. To this day–I’m writing this from the dentist’s office. Just a short time ago, I got so worked up about getting the Novocain that I had to get damn near topless I was sweating so much. I trembled like a leaf. My breath became shallow and my heart raced; I thought I was going to pass out.
Apparently, I’m not alone. Many Americans avoid going to the dentist because of anxiety. I don’t know what it is about being in the dentist’s chair that freaks me out so much. Actually, i *do* have a few ideas:
- I don’t like people putting their hands in my mouth. That seems very personal to me for some reason.
- Needles and sharp objects. Never been a fan of those, but once they’re in my mouth my stress level quadruples.
- The drilling. Oh, the drilling. It is irritating enough when it’s outside your office window. Even more so when it’s INSIDE YOUR HEAD.
- Smell and taste. Smells like a nail salon, tastes like a chemical cocktail. I actually gagged today because whatever they used for my filling got onto the back of my tongue.
- The cost. Not only do I have to suffer through #1-5, I have to give up all of my hard earned coin to do it!
I did some research and found that others feel anxious about going to the dentist for many of the same reasons I do. This is comforting; I’ve always felt like a freak for getting so worked up about sitting in the dentist’s chair. Luckily there are things one can do to cope with this fear, including (but not limited to) taking awesome care of your teeth so you don’t have to go to the dentist in the first place.
That’s going to be my new coping mechanism–brushing like a fiend, flossing like a champ, and waterpik-ing like nobody’s business! I’ll also keep seeing the awesome ladies at my dentist’s office–they are excellent at making me feel comfortable and calming me down if I panic.
Any of y’all get anxiety like this–not just the dentist, but with anything? If so, how do you cope?