Expert Answers

We know how daunting dental treatment can be. Our Dental Phobia certified experts are here to help ease your mind before treatment by answering your questions.

How Can I Find a New Dentist?
15th September 2016

Hi, I'm concerned about my dentist. My last dentist, who was very good, retired last year. Since this has happened the place has gone to the dogs. All the reception staff have been sacked and all the dentists are new and have trouble communicating with patients. My son wasn't happy yesterday when I took him for his appointment. The dentist was not professional and he didn't really do a good examination either. My new dentist is OK, but I have pockets between my teeth, which are painful. She doesn't know what form of treatment to give apart from a clean, which would involve an injection, which would kill me because it is still painful and my tooth is loose. I need advice, I don't know how to find another dentist and I'm worried now about taking my son back and going back myself.

A. Hello. It sounds as if you have lost confidence in this practice. Once that happens it's v...

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Dr Jennifer Pinder

Bupa Dental Centre 77 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3QQ

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Can I Have All My Teeth Removed?
9th September 2016

Hi. I have diabetes and have bad gum disease and wobbly teeth, so find it hard to eat properly. I'm very scared of dentists and gag and have also been sick the last time I went. I just want my teeth all taken out to stop this pain but have had no luck. Please help.

A. Hello, I can empathise with you as I have diabetes myself. Unfortunately, this could have ...

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Dental Phobia

Dr Jennifer Pinder

Bupa Dental Centre 77 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3QQ

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How Can I Learn to Cope with Going to the Dentist?
31st August 2016

How can I learn to cope with going to the dentist? I'm due to have my wisdom teeth out in 10 days and no-one will explain what will happen when I'm asleep. I have a great dentist and he has managed to get me from standing in the doorway to actually being examined in the dentist chair. After the first time in the chair and when I was tilted back, the appointment ended badly and I ended up running out in tears as I felt so panicked due to forcing myself to face my fears head on. I feel scared all the time and can't sleep for worrying about my teeth and don't want to eat at all in case I need more work done. Is there anything I can do at all to help myself? It's all I think about and it's taking over my whole life. Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

A. Hello. It sounds as if these persistent unpleasant thoughts are the problem that are causi...

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Dental Phobia

Dr Jennifer Pinder

Bupa Dental Centre 77 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3QQ

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Can I Have All My Teeth Removed?
30th August 2016

I hate my teeth and want them all out. Is this possible? Most of my teeth are in a bad way.

A. Yes, it is a possibility. But you need to get someone to have a look 1. Do all the teeth ...

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Dental Phobia

Dr Jennifer Pinder

Bupa Dental Centre 77 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3QQ

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Should I Get a Crown or Have My Tooth Extracted?
26th August 2016

Hi, I had a root canal done 2 years ago on one of my teeth in the upper right hand side of my mouth. the next day the front enamel broke off my tooth, since then I have been having problems and I haven't been able to eat on the right hand side of my mouth since.  Lately I have been having a dull ache in the same tooth (I think). I went to my dentist and he told me it was a gum infection and gave me amoxicillin, but the pain is still there, my dentist is now talking about putting a crown on but I don't want this as it is expensive and it doesn't guarantee the pain will go away. I was wondering if you think it would be best just for me to have the tooth extracted? I have a phobia of dentists and I suffer from panic attacks. Any help/advice would be greatly appreciated. Kind regards, Sophie. 

A. Hello Sophie. Without seeing an X-ray of the tooth I can't really give you a definite answ...

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Dental Phobia

Dr Jennifer Pinder

Bupa Dental Centre 77 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3QQ

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Can My Tooth Still Be Crowned if It Has Decay?
26th August 2016

I have a tooth that needs a crown but it also has decay at the gumline. Do you think that the tooth can still be crowned?

A. Hello,  I can't really answer that without seeing the tooth in question. You need to ask ...

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Dental Phobia

Dr Jennifer Pinder

Bupa Dental Centre 77 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3QQ

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Is Sedation Freely Available?
26th August 2016

Hello, I have a cracked back tooth and I am in a lot of pain. I also have a HUGE phobia of the needles used and to a lesser part the pain in general, is sedation freely available? I just need some help and for someone to let me know. Thank you.

A. Needle phobia can be a very real barrier to getting the treatment you need. IV Sedation is...

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Dental Phobia

Dr Jennifer Pinder

Bupa Dental Centre 77 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3QQ

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Do I Need to Have My Teeth Drilled?
26th August 2016

I would like to send a picture. but don't know how. Mine's the worst I've seen on here. I had a broken jaw 15 years ago, will I need drilled teeth? I haven't had it sorted, they've all gone nearly. 

A. I see many people with broken down teeth who haven't been able to go to the dentist for ha...

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Dental Phobia

Dr Jennifer Pinder

Bupa Dental Centre 77 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3QQ

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Can Air Abrasion and Waterlase Only be Used for Small Fillings?
26th August 2016

Dear Dr Pinder, I am in need of 2 fillings but I am nervous about visiting the dentist to get them done. 5 years ago I fainted whilst having a biopsy taken at my local maxillofacial unit and I worry that it will happen again on my next visit, so I keep putting off my filling appointment. I have heard about air abrasion and waterlase as potential substitutes to a drill. Am I right in thinking they can only be used for small fillings? Would you recommend these procedures for a nervous patient and are they expensive? I look forward to hearing from you. Best wishes.

A. If air abrasion is used then its usually only for early decay. However, it can be used wit...

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Dental Phobia

Dr Jennifer Pinder

Bupa Dental Centre 77 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3QQ

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Can You Tell if a Filling is Needed Without an X-Ray?
16th August 2016

Dear Dr Pinder, I have just visited a new dentist today for a checkup. On inspection, he did not take any X-rays, I simply sat on the chair and he used a mirror. After 30 seconds, he said yes you need two fillings on UR 6 and LL 7. However, I have never had any pain from them whatsoever. Is this right? Can a dentist tell if you need fillings just by looking and with no X-rays?

A. I can't comment on whether you need the fillings or not. However, at the very least, the d...

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Dental Phobia

Dr Jennifer Pinder

Bupa Dental Centre 77 Cornhill, London, EC3V 3QQ

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