I am very familiar with the surroundings of a dental surgery and have spent many hours sat in the dentist chair throughout my life. I know a lot of people don’t like going to the dentist and some fear having dental procedures, yet it doesn’t phase me at all. I am used to having multiple dental implements in my mouth and the noises associated with it.

My recent experience with my dentist still hasn’t given me a fear of dentists but I wouldn’t say that I am happy about it.

I had a wisdom tooth taken out not long after giving birth to my first daughter and no word of a lie, dry socket was more painful than giving birth and a broken jaw was on par with this.

When I went to the hospital to see the consultant about my tooth and broken jaw, I don’t know what I was expecting, I guess at most an x-ray however I ended up leaving my appointment in tears. Apparently, my impacted wisdom tooth is rotting inside my gums and so there is no alternative other than to have it removed. I was also told the pain wouldn’t go away until it is taken out. It’s not the thought of having my tooth taken out, my gum being cut open, having my jaw broken (again) nor a chunk of bone being removed that caused the tears. It’s the fact that due to the complexity of removing the tooth (bearing in mind that my dentist thought she could remove it whilst I was sat in the dentist chair!) I have to have a general anaesthetic and I am PETRIFIED! If there was any way out of it then I would avoid it at all costs but as my mum pointed out, I don’t really have a choice if my tooth is rotting, and I do want the pain to go away.

So, I have been urgently referred and unlike most things that have been delayed due to Covid I will be having the operation in less than 2 weeks’ time!

I don’t know where my fear of having a general anaesthetic comes from and know that thousands of people have them every day without any issue. But bad duck is having a field day with the ‘what ifs’. I understand that it will be a lot easier for me and the surgeon if I am asleep and they have said it will only take between 15-30 minutes, yet it doesn’t stop the fear.

I am frustrated with myself that I have this fear as I know most people aren’t phased by it and would much rather be asleep for the procedure. I wish it didn’t bother me, but it does. Unfortunately, due to Covid my Mum can’t come with me. For me, the thought makes me want to cry and I am worried about how I will cope on the day.

However, I am trying my best to deal with my fear by having the strength to mention my fear when I have my pre-op and when I arrive on the day (if I manage to get myself through the door!).

It was ‘amausing’ that I have been told to expect a little bit of discomfort after my operation which is what my dentist said after she broke my jaw and so I am preparing myself this time for a few days of being off my feet. This time around I have told my counselling placement that I will be having the week off as well as college and I am making sure I have plenty of convenience food in so that I don’t need to think about shopping or cooking. Instead, I am going to allow myself to snuggle in my new Christmas pyjamas and watch Christmas films rather than try to carry on as normal. Hopefully I will be ok after a couple of days but at least I am prepared for having a week of not feeling hunky dory.

At least I get to enjoy my birthday before my operation and all being well me and my girls are going away a week after my operation which gives me something to look forward to.

I really hope that the fear won’t consume me on the day and that I can take it in my stride…I will try and distract myself by thinking of Michael McIntyre’s clip about his trip to the dentist and how his biggest concern when having his operation was having to walk down the corridor with his bum on show!!

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