22) Taking the Drama out of Going to the Dentist

This week’s blog post and podcast episode are about a recent experience I had regarding my dental care. I actually started out my podcast last week talking about the brain BS that came up around whether or not I wanted to have anesthesia for removing an implant and getting a bone graft. I am sure I am not the only person here who gets nervous about oral surgery or even routine visits to the dentist. I want to share with you how my thought process looked initially (lots of brain BS!), how I changed the way I was thinking on purpose, and how I managed my mind leading up to the visit.

So about 12 years ago, I had to get a tooth pulled and received an implant that I mistakenly thought would last forever (brain BS!) . Turns out it is not uncommon for the old implants to crack on the collar because of the way they were designed. That procedure was tough because I was not numb enough and she could not get the tooth dislodged and free. Making matters worse, the oral surgeon kept apologizing and look flustered. Let’s just say, it was a miserable experience that I was hoping to never repeat.

Flash forward to about eight months ago, we discovered during a routine visit and teeth cleaning that the crown on top of the implant was loose. My dentist, not the same women who did the last procedure, tried like hell to pry the crown off the tooth so that I did not end up swallowing it and having to pay for a new one. We were hoping that the crown was the issue and not the implant. No matter how much she tried to pull it off or loosen it, the crown would not budge. We finally surrendered and I was told not to chew on that side of my mouth for the time being. About six months later, I went for another teeth cleaning, and it was even looser, but we still could not get the crown off the implant. We must have worn it down though, because the following morning, I rolled over onto my side and the crown fell into my cheek pocket! Yay, I was so excited and thought that it would be easy-peasy to put back in. Nope. Not the case. However, it took a few more months to realize that and actually get a plan in place and for me to find out I had to have surgery:(

My initial feeling was fear, and my thought was this is going to be bad. I met with the surgeon, who looked about 12 yo (but I highly recommend) and he said I could be put under if I wanted that. My first instinct was to say yes, I do want that! All I could think about was the last procedure and how that went, that I could not even consider that it might not be as bad. He assured me that the technology was different now and that he does this procedure all the time. I was still so stuck in the past in my mind, that I could not even consider that this procedure could go better. Deciding to have anesthesia put my mind to rest and I was not worried at all about the procedure until the week before it was scheduled.

So here we were, the week of the procedure, and something was bugging me about getting anesthesia. One of the things that bothered me was I had been put under once before, and I was a little cray-cray after that for several weeks. I was impulsive and kind of scary driving which scared the crap out of my husband, LOL. That was weighing on me and a voice inside my head (turns out it was my inner voice) said that getting anesthesia might be overkill. That same voice said, why not look at this as an opportunity to learn how to manage pain and experience personal growth? Why not just decide to not be afraid of the pain? That voice was so calm and grounded that I knew it wasn’t brain BS. It wasn’t judging me or criticizing me for being scared, it was showing me a new way to look at the situation. I can pretty much guarantee you that I have never looked at going to the dentist or an oral surgeon as an opportunity for personal growth in the past, LOL! I sat with those thoughts for a few days and did not change my plan…yet.

It was not until two days before the procedure that I knew for sure that I should not have the anesthesia. I was sitting in our sunroom and actually decided that I am no longer going to be afraid of pain. I thought this would serve me in many ways as an aging woman who has experienced more than my share of aches and pains. What a radical thought to think I am not going to be afraid of pain anymore on purpose. I seriously did not even know that fear of pain was an option until that moment. I have spoken a lot about fear but never in the context of pain. It never occurred to me that you could just decide not be scared of pain…but you can and I did! Once I made the decision, I called the surgeon’s office and they said that my time for surgery might change or even be rescheduled, because they do the surgeries with anesthesia first. I sensed a little disapproval from the woman on the phone for messing with their schedule (brain BS!) but did not care because I felt in my bones that I was making the right decision.

Well, it turns out the time did not change at all , so I did not mess up anybody’s schedule after all. I woke up and the first thought I had was I am having oral surgery today. That was quickly followed by a flash of fear and concern about not having anesthesia. I am fully aware of the Law of Attraction though, and purposely changed the trajectory of my thinking instantly and stayed calm, centered, and grounded in the thought I am no longer afraid of pain and welcome the personal growth that comes with managing it. I envisioned everything going well and experiencing minimal discomfort. I visualized the doctor and staff being kind and compassionate and the procedure not taking long. I also anticipated that the recovery would be quick and easy. Once I got into this state of mind and believed it, I was ready to get out of bed and prepare for the appointment.

I arrived at the office on time and was feeling really good about myself for the way I was managing my mind and my willingness to not resist pain. I can honestly say I was not afraid at all and knew I had made the right decision. I joked with the staff and the doctor and explained why I decided not to have anesthesia. They were surprised by how calm I was (after the way I was at our initial meeting) and were very attentive to my needs and making sure I was numb enough during the procedure. They found it humorous that I was a life coach and looking at it like an experiment. They did a lot of digging, drilling and tugging but it wasn’t anything I could not handle. I just kept thinking my thought I welcome all of the pain and discomfort that comes with personal growth and it freaking worked! I swear that thought was like an anchor to my soul. Imagine how different the whole thing would have played out if thoughts create results (and we know they do) and my thought was this is going to be terrible! I would have unknowingly manifested a terrible experience. Instead, I purposely rewired my subconscious and manifested an easy and relatively painless surgery and recovery, which is why I also turned down pain medications and opted for Advil.

Now if you listened to the podcast episode or read the blog post on The Law of Attraction a couple weeks ago, you know that many of us spend our lives manifesting terrible things because we don’t know any better. Now would be a good time to go back and listen to it if you have not yet. I mean, talk about reclaiming your personal power! Come on, this is amazing and exciting. We think that so many people come into our lives and so many events take place and that we did not manifest any of it. The truth is that we create our reality, all of it…including how oral surgery goes and the type of recovery we will experience. So next time you have to go to the dentist or oral surgeon, pay attention to what is going on in your brain. What thoughts are you thinking? Where are you placing your focus? On fear of pain? Fear it won’t go well? OR are you envisioning it will be a piece of cake and no big deal? That it will be easy-peasy and minimal discomfort? Because I promise you that if you are not using your conscious mind to create the experience, your subconscious mind is in charge and that is full of brain BS!

In conclusion, going to the dentist has NOT been my favorite thing to do for decades. You just never know what might get discovered at a routine visit and what that might mean in terms of necessary procedures, AKA pain! Haha! Now that I know I am manifesting all of it myself, I am going to be much more aware and purposeful of how I focus my attention and what I choose to create! Moving forward, you can be sure I will be taking the time to envision how the appointment will go, how it will feel in my body, and how kind and compassionate my dentist or surgeon will be. I will embrace positive results before they actually happen and trust in the process of the Law of Attraction. Join me in episode 23 of the Brain BS Podcast to discuss this further!