I intentionally searched for a gentle dentist because I have very sensitive gums. The one I found seemed fine at first. But, having him do actual work was a nightmare. At my last office, the doctor would use some kind of numbing medicine on a big cotton swab before he’d do the shot and would leave it there for a few minutes. This one only put it on for about a second before he was trying to stick the needle in my mouth. I asked him if it made a difference and he said that it was just as effective either way. No, it’s not. The second he put the needle in I practically jumped out of my chair and started crying. I tried to get him to stop, but he didn’t. He just kept saying it would only be a second. It was the worst feeling ever because I couldn’t move or do anything while he still had the needle in. When he finally finished, I was practically hyperventilating and he didn’t even care. He just told his assistant to help me and he left the room.
The assistant was very sweet. I felt like she had been through this a lot with him, so I was calm when he came back, but I was still really upset that he didn’t seem to care. From that point on, it only got worse. He talked to me like I was a child and scolded me for moving. All throughout the filling he was rough and stopped every minute or two to correct some perceived inappropriate behavior I was doing. I moved. I closed my mouth. I wasn’t angled right. Then, he just started grabbing my head and snapping it to wherever he wanted it to be.
I was humiliated and hurt. I am not ever going back to him, but now I seem to have a new problem. The numbness doesn’t seem to be wearing off. It’s been almost two days and I am still numb in some spots. Obviously, he wasn’t a gentle dentist at all, but now I’m afraid he did permanent damage. I can’t go back. I won’t go back. What should I do?
You’re right- he wasn’t a gentle dentist in the least. I’m annoyed he tried to advertise and pass himself off as one. I sincerely hope you’ll write a review letting other potential victims know what he’s really like. I’m sorry you had this kind of experience when you specifically looked for someone who would be extra careful. Don’t give up. There are truly gentle dentists out there.
As far as the numbness goes, it sounds like he hit a nerve- a real nerve, not just an emotional one. This is something that can happen in any office, as the exact placement of the nerves varies from person to person. The doctor’s goal is to land close to it, but not touch it. Sometimes, it gets grazed or even punctured despite the dentist doing everything right. In most cases where this happens, the numbness goes away in a matter of days or a week. If the nerve is totally severed, it could be permanent, but this is extremely rare.
While there’s no surefire way to prevent this, slowing down certainly helps, and you’ll need a new gentle dentist next time around. Check out reviews and ask questions of the office ahead of time to find out what makes the office gentle. Best of luck to you.
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