I recently had a tooth extracted. It was one of the worst experiences of my life. It took 12 shots for the dentist to get me numb. Now it is five days after the procedure and I have this bone spur that zaps me mercilessly. I know I should go back to the dentist to get this dealt with but after the last visit, I’m not sure I can. What do you recommend?
I can understand your hesitation in going back to the dentist. Once you have a traumatic experience at the dentist iit can be a terrifying idea to go back. I think I can help. It is very likely the reason you had so much trouble getting numb in the first place is due to some anxiety you were feeling about the procedure.
There are still quite a few dentists who don’t yet know about the connection between anxiety and the effectiveness of the numbing medication. Essentially, the higher the anxiety, the less effective your Novocaine will be. The fact that it took twelve shots tells me you had some fear going in. That is totally normal. The good news is there is a solution. You are not condemned to needing endless shots every time you go to the dentist.
I am going to suggest you see a sedation dentist. This is not a specialty. It is simply a dentist who offers dental sedation options. There are usually different levels of sedation. Given your recent experiences, I am going to suggest you use oral conscious sedation. This will completely relax you. In fact, you will be so relaxed you can sleep through your appointment if you’d like. Because of this, some people call it sleep dentistry. It is administered by swallowing a pill. The only real downside is you will need someone to drive you to and from your appointment as well as stay with you for a few hours after until you are completely lucid and steady on your feet.