Dentist phobia is causing a stink

I’m 34, desperate to settle down with a woman, but I have a real problem, a phobia about dentists. It’s huge, and it’s ruining my life.

I haven’t been to a dentist since I was 12, when he tried to take a tooth out before I was anaesthetised, and it was a nightmare. The battle between him and me, and my tooth, and me finally passing out, put me in hospital for two weeks.

Since then I haven’t ever wanted to return. But I know I have dogbreath, and I know that’s because I’ve got gum disease which is just rampant now. How do I know? I knew because every time I opened my mouth, people took one step backwards.

But after losing two jobs on the trot after only a week in each (I’m in retail) a manager was ‘kind’ enough to tell me that my breath stinks and customers have complained.

I hated that manager, but I can see what he meant. I can smell it myself, and I’m in a lot of pain. I’m at home, unemployed, feeling sorry for myself, and trying to pick up girls on the internet, but I can’t ever meet up with them before I’ve coped with these dental abscesses and my breath.

I don’t know what to do. I know I can’t face a dentist, but I know I’m in a bad way and in serious pain all the time. Is there any way you could save my life from going into this dreadful downward spiral?

Barbara says: Periodontal disease, which is gum disease, and which can be linked to stress, needs serious help. It may have been triggered by that experience you had as a child. Certainly, it hasn’t helped you overcome it.

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Go to your GP and explain the problem and ask for psychological help. Medicine and dentistry don’t help each other out much, but I think you need counselling and reassurance. Dentistry has moved on and is not usually the Wild West Show, now.

So, you need some liaison between the counsellor/psychologist and a good dental hospital, which can not only clear your dogbreath, but your abscesses, and replace those teeth that are dislodged, and make you smile like George Clooney.

Nowadays there are so many gentle and kind treatments for people like you, who have phobias. Just take step one, and see your GP.