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Dental Phobia Stories

Story 13

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First of all I want to thank everyone on this homepage! I don't know how many people assisted me - but - I did it!

Something like 6 weeks ago my two front teeth broke off while eating breakfast. No big surprise, since I had not seen any dentist for at least 30 years. I guess anybody and everybody can imagine the condition of my other teeth. All this was related to a dental phobia - ill-treatment by a dentist when I was a child.

The day this happened my serious first thought was - suicide. Anything was easier to handle than going to see a dentist. So I started to check the web for "dental phobia" sites and also came here. After reading all the comments, suggestions and so on I decided to check with the Ehime Medical University hospital here on Shikoku, Japan, right across from the place where I live (less than 200 meters to walk!). A friend of mine from Poland who is doing oral surgery experimental studies there arranged everything for me.

Tell you, going there the first time - like in a sauna, sweat all over, heart beat at 160, shaking and so on. So, it took me 5 attempts until I finally made it to the reception and another 3 attempts to finally go to the 3rd floor - the dental facility location.

The first meeting with my dentist. Mr. Okada wasn't that bad. We sat in the lobby, talked and he convinced me to get an x-ray taken. No big deal, I thought, can do. Returning to his place he asked me to sit in the dentist chair - so the problems started. But after talking to me like to a little child and convincing me nothing would happen, nothing would be done except for a counseling session I finally made it. And he was really great! After a long talk (yes, he really took his time!!) I agreed to surgery while undergoing general anesthetics, putting me asleep and doing at least most of the work. Two weeks later I went to the hospital, stayed overnight, got my "shot" the next day at lunch time and woke up 6 hours later. All my broken, more or less comletely destroyed had been removed, all other teeth been worked on and I had temporary ones in my mouth. Seeing it the first time in the mirror - tell you, my life changed that second. Sure, it was hurting, a total o!f 10 teeth had been removed, numerous other ones been worked on, but I was able to smile and after less than 1 week eat again.

Now I still have to go to the hospital once a week, to get some "minor things" fixed, like root canal treatment, filling cavities and so on. Of course, it hurts, but it is acceptable. Of course I am still somewhat afraid - but it is not that phobia any more! Actually, I am looking forward to having my last apointment in something like 8 weeks - not because I don't have to go there any more, but because my life will be great again, enjoyable, having fun, laughing, smiling, eating like everyone else.

I want to thank here also my girl-friend who supported me all the time. She was there when I needed her, she cheered me up and was there when I needed her most. I want to thank the staff at Ehime Medical University Dental Section, Japan, for all the great work they have done so far and last but not least I want to thank the numerous people who helped me to overcome my fear and supported me.

Submitted by Klaus

2005. The copyright lies with the respective authors.