Nitrous Oxide. It is the best thing ever. Especially when you have high anxiety and have to have dental work done.
A while back I was seeing a dentist who, when giving me injections of Novocaine, would get too close to my facial nerve and would make that side of my entire face spasm. When I freaked a little about it he tried to tell me that it was normal and that if it didn’t spasm it wasn’t able to numb the same. I just stared at him is amazement. In all my life, whenever I had work done in my mouth, I had never experienced something so painful and scary. This included the time when I was a child and the dentist told me that I was being a big baby because I was in pain and teary. That guy was just an ass.
I couldn’t believe what the face-spasm dentist told me. How is it that I’d gone that many years without spasms yet had a completely numbed mouth. I decided at that point that face-spasm dentist was a quack and not a very good or understanding dentist. He didn’t seem to care about my freak out and didn’t try to comfort or assure me at all.
It was at that point that I took a break from seeing dentists. I continued my good oral hygiene and huddled in the corner when I started having a tooth that was bothering me. I held out for over a year before finally giving in to the excruciating pain that one tooth was experiencing and went to see a new (and hopefully good) dentist.
I made it though the exam without my breathing stopping and without too many tears shed. I found out that, other then a cleaning, I had a few cavities and had to have pulls done. Hence the tears that were shed. However, they informed me that my gums were healthy and in excellent condition. Therefore, telling them that I was taking good care of my teeth.
Ma’m, your teeth need work. We are going to pull a few, fill a couple more, and it won’t be fun. However, your gums look superb.
The cleaning went well. I’ve always like cleanings. Something about how smooth my teeth feel afterward, the cool water rinsing my teeth, and hearing about my healthy gums. It’s the little things.
Today I had a scheduled appointment to have the pulls done. As today approached, anytime I thought about the appointment, my stomach would flip and I would have to remind myself that I could still breathe. Inhale, Exhale, Repeat.
I opted for the Nitrous Oxide even though I had never had it. It had to be better then the crushing anxiety that I had as I drove to the dentist and then sat in the chair unable to speak. They started the gas and slowly but surely I felt my body relax and air enter my lungs.
Now, mind you, I still got anxious when the process started, but I kept breathing through my nose bringing that wonderful gas into my lungs.
I lived through the process and now I’m sore, swollen, and the drugs are kicking my butt. I am a little loopy and so very sleepy. I’m suppose to take it very easy for the next three days and I’m on a soft food diet until things heal some. All in all from the directions I was given I am suppose to lay around and do pretty much nothing that may get my heart rate up.
This sounds good in theory except for the fact that I’m not so good at the doing nothing all day. This may damage my walking every other day. Though I’m considering going for a walk tomorrow…just very leisurely one.