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teething [updated! more panic driven imminent death!]

I am in mortal pain. It's been creeping up on my for days. No, probably weeks. At first I thought it was a sinus infection. Then allergies. All the while, I knew in the back of my mind that it had something to do with my teeth and I kept pushing that thought away like a bastard stepchild.

My abject - if irrational - fear of dentistry has finally taken its toll on me. Never put off until tomorrow what can be filled/cleaned/pulled, etc. today, kids. I think I'm going to need oral surgery at this point, as my gum is so swollen that all the teeth on my right side hurt instead of just that the area by that one wisdom tooth.

I have gone through an economy size bottle of Excedrin Migraine (the cure-all miracle drug) in the past week. I'm sure if there's any such thing as acetaminophen overdose, I'm a candidate for it.

To make matters more interesting, my regular dentist has stopped taking my insurance. So now I have to go through the list of shady dentists in the area who actually take my insurance, call them all to see who is taking new patients, beg any one of them to take me in tomorrow and then pray that they are one of those dentists that do the "painless dentistry" thing and they don't model themselves after Steve Martin.

So if I'm extra cranky (even though today is opening day and I should be estatically happy), you know why. If I don't find a dentist to take me tomorrow, there's going to be carnage on Long Island. Someone has got to bear the brunt of my pain.


Self diagnosis is a terrible thing. In the space of a few hours, I've gone from abcessed tooth to raging infection to some debilitating disease that will surely cause my demise within hours. After Googlig some symptoms, I came up with the idea that I had a tooth infection that spread to my heart, lungs and maybe even my liver. Of course, I developed pnuemonia within minutes (this is somewhat based in part on the reality that I had about 10 sleep apnea episodes last night, which could very well be attributed to terrible sinus weather and not imminent death) and sat on the couch gasping for air and thinking about dialing 911. And then I did what I usually do in the throes of a panic attack - I picked up a book (this one in this case) and when I got about ten pages through without actually dying, I realized that I was probably breathing ok.

Still, the pain is not imaginary nor is the fact that the pain has moved its way past my mouth area and into my ears and on the right side of my neck. And there's not a dentist/doctor to be found on Sundays. Nor a psychiatrist, for that matter.

Just remember, if I should drop dead today, I don't want a funeral and I want lots of Nine Inch Nails played at my memorial service.

And no, you can't have my stuff.


If you haven't tried it yet, use what you use on a baby who's teething: orajel or anbesol. (Some people rub whiskey on their baby's gums but that never seemed copasetic to me.)

It won't solve the problem, but it might get you through the day. So you can put off the dentist for a little longer.

Wow...this post could well have been written about my wife, who cannot go to the dentist without downing two valium beforehand. Susan breaks into tears at the mere thought of having to pick up the phone and make a dental appointment. Because of this, I normally have to make appointments for her.

Might I suggest two valium and a bottle of Wild Turkey. I'd take credit for it, but it's really the Hunter S. Thompson approach...and it's geh-ron-teed that you will feel no pain...or much of anything else.... ;0)

Rotsa ruck, kimsosabe....

Fear of a dentist/dentistry is NEVER irrational.

Once you get the tooth pulled you'll wonder why you waited. I hate going to the dentist too, which is why I now need about ten root canals.

what Ed said... send the troops for orajel

I'm so-so on dentists [holding hand out and waggling] ... but I find the visits to the doctor for all those female type checkups much more uncomfortable.

And now that I've turned 50 there's even more "recommended" checkups I just don't want to even think about much less have ...

If you actually have an infection spreading, such that you can feel it in your neck area now (if it's a spreading infection, you should notice an infection pocket that is fairly severe in your mouth near the tooth), you need to hit that with anti-biotics asap. The infection can get much worse in a short period of time; and you won't be able to get it pulled without first spending a few days killing the infection.

I spoke with Dr. Sanjay Gupta over at CNN, and he says it is septic shock. Take care.

That sucks - hope you get through the day without too much pain. I'm not all that brave about dentists either...

There absolutely is such a thing as acetaminophen overdose, so please watch how much you're taking. As little as 3-4 times the daily limit can cause permanent and fatal liver damage.

It is perfectly normal for tooth pain to radiate and cause pain in the general area. Get thee to the doctor and make haste, (but don't worry, you aren't dying.)

Good luck.

Would you say you have Dentophobia or Odontophobia?

Found this site yesterday and can't get enough of it.

I just went through something like this. Ibuprofen will work better for pain relief due to the anti-inflammatory properties. It took a total pounding pain down to something almost liveable. Even though the pain was everywhere, it was all caused by one tooth with inflamed nerves. Once I got the root canal started, the pain went away very quickly.

I had it for the same reason you do. I absolutely hate the dentist. I hate having people root around my mouth with metal instruments. It's the most exquisite torture I can imagine. Total phobia. Also very common.

I'm sure if there's any such thing as acetaminophen overdose, I'm a candidate for it.

Not funny, woman. There absolutely is, and you can ruin your liver with it:


I hate dentists too. Hate, loathe, fear, and dread. But cut back on the acetaminophen. Meanwhile I'll cross my fingers for you that the dentist visit is quick and relatively painless.

Unless you've ruled it out, you could indeed have a sinus infection from the symptoms you've described. I had a sinus infection that I thought was an abcessed tooth. The pain was excruciating and the pattern sounds very similar to yours. At any rate, you should get on antibiotics ASAP!

I have having oral surgery in one week. All wisdom teeth must go! But I am looking forward to the post op drugs, I've heard they are verrrry nice.

And on top of that I am having a vesectomy this week.

yay. life sucks and then you go to the oral surgeon and have your stuff snipped and then you die.

good luck.

Ok. Peat wins this round.