The Dentist

I had a rough day yesterday because I had to go to the dentist. I knew it was going to be tough; I even told my wife the day before that I REALLY didn’t want to go. But I knew I had to go, so I sucked it up and went and got it over with.

My Aspergers presents me with advantages and disadvantages when it comes to dealing with the dentist. On one hand, my Aspergers has blessed me with a well-above-average pain tolerance. I actually have the ability to unfocus my brain on what’s going on in my mouth and focus on tiny details around the room (a poster, the fluorescent light above me, etc.). This makes the actual dental work that needs to be done a piece of cake for me.

The hard part is the social aspect, of course. I can hear you asking, “What about going to the dentist counts as a social interaction?”

The first thing you must know is that my teeth – for lack of a better description – are fucked up. I have major crowding issues, teeth squished into places where they don’t belong, and in general I just have a major mess going on in there. It’s not pretty. The whole situation makes brushing and flossing very difficult. Although not horrendous, my oral hygiene could be much better. This whole situation is embarassing for me, so it’s obviously uncomfortable for me to be poked, prodded, and evaluated on how disgusting my mouth is.

But I got through it! My back was all sweaty, and my head hurt a little, and my wife had to order a pizza as comfort food for lunch… but I made it through! To be honest – and this is a little embarassing to admit, but what else is this blog for? – I was proud of myself for doing it. Maybe I can use this as inspiration in the future when I’m facing a difficult situation; I can do it if I just grit my (horribly disfigured) teeth and go for it.

Posted on January 26, 2012, in Aspergers, Social Anxiety. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. quirkyandlaughing

    Kudos to you for going! I am Aspie & virtually NEVER go. I once had an appointment and literally turned around in the parking lot. I've even tried anti-anxiety meds specifically for cleanings & they didn't work. I never thought about it from the social aspect, but now that you mention it, this is part of my phobia (lots of other reasons, too, though). I'm happy I stumbled upon your blog – it feels good to be understood.

  2. Way to go! That's a huge accomplishment. I avoid the dentist at all costs until I'm in pain and then, of course, that makes it even worse: "Why haven't you been here in 8 years?" etc. I'm all about comfort pizzas, by the way. Nice!

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