Scared to go to dentist after cancer treatment.
- Posted on: Jul 22 2014
I have had excellent oral health throughout my life. Then, about a year ago I got the dreaded diagnosis of caner. I have endured several rounds of chemotherapy and the cancer seems to be doing better. But my teeth are in bad shape. They ache and can be painful. I have never had a cavity but my teeth are simply embarrassing after this illness. I’m super scared to go to the dentist because I just don’t know how much more I can take. Any advice?
– Rachel in Minnesota
You should be commended for facing cancer head on. You know firsthand how devastating that diagnosis can be be, yet it sounds like you are a fighter. It is also very understandable that you are apprehensive about seeing the dentist after all you have endured.
It is not uncommon for dental issues to surface after being treated with chemotherapy. It can be really nasty on your enamel and leave you vulnerable to increased tooth decay and oral sores. The toothaches and pain is also quite common among cancer patients and survivors. The discomfort you are experiencing may also be a side effect of other medications used to fight the disease.
If you are particularly anxious, you may be interested in sedation dentistry. With oral sedation, all you do is take a pill and it will make you indifferent to what is going on. Get in with a dentist that is gentle and be upfront about what you have been through. There are many sedation dentists out there that will go out of their way to make you comfortable and relaxed with a cater to cowards approach to dentistry. Some practices even use aromatherapy, massages, warm towels, you name it to help the anxious patient. So much so that you may feel like you are entering a spa versus the dentist.
Overall, it sounds like you have had great oral health so hopefully the right dentist can help get you back on track and work with you on whatever immediate dental issues you are experience.
This post is sponsored by Atlanta cosmetic dentist Flax Dental.