I Hate Pain! Dental Pain Management I

by Dr. Joe :) · 25 comments

The Secrets of Dentistry Without Pain

Hate dental pain? I understand how you feel.

Here in Part I of Pain Management I’ll explain why people go to the dentist and why they hate dental pain.

Everyone hates dental pain.

The potential for pain at the dentist is very real. Your mouth is a very sensitive part of your body. Without anesthetic and sedation, dentistry would be excruciating.

I can’t imagine how bad things must have been prior to the invention of Novocaine.

Back when I first graduated, I worked for the Canadian Military in Nova Scotia. One afternoon I was working on a young man fresh in from Newfoundland who had a mouth full of deep cavities.

He refused Local Anesthetic. Can you imagine that?

I practically begged him to allow me to administer it, but he would have none of it. He also refused to tell me why.

I proceeded to restore one of his teeth and it was a nightmare session for both of us. He was in pure agony. I’m talking Marathon Man level of agony.

I couldn’t stand the idea of bringing anyone that much dental pain. If I had to perform dentistry like that every day, there’s no way I could last in this profession.

So yes, the potential for pain in the dental chair is significant.

sweet post-doodle - 573Dental Pain Management

My ability as a dentist will always be judged by my ability to manage pain.

Dental pain will make or break the relationship.

“Is this going to hurt?” runs through every patient’s mind. Every time I comfortably deliver dental care, a patient will build up trust and loyalty. If I fail to take care of a patient in a pleasant comfortable manner, I risk losing that patient forever.

Dental treatment is invasive, so much of what dentists focus upon involves Pain Managementrelieving tooth pain, preventing future pain, and minimizing any procedural pain.

Pain Management will always be a huge component for dentists and patients. Dental pain will make or break the relationship.

sweet post-doodle - 5734 Reasons People Go to the Dentist

People go the dentist for these 4 main reasons:

  1. Dental Crisis – eliminate severe pain and deal with the crisis situation.
  2. Dental Repairs – deal with problems before they get worse.
  3. Dental Prevention – avoid future problems.
  4. Dental Optimization – explore possibilities for a healthy beautiful smile.
dental pain management for people that hate pain

“Ouch! I hate dental pain.”

I’ve listed the four reasons  in order of treatment priority. Urgent needs first and potential threats second. Routine preventive measures once stability is achieved and optimization is optional.

Those first three Reasons People Go to the Dentist are driven by pain, with the first two being reactive and the third more proactive.

Only the last one – Optimization – isn’t about pain and disease. The focus of Optimization is on opportunity, hope and possibilities. It’s all about health and wellness.

Not everyone is in the market for that optimal level of care. What they seek corresponds to one of the four reasons listed above.

  • Some only want emergency crisis-level care (escaping current dental pain).
  • Some just want the basic repairs (fixing current dental problems).
  • Some want a decent level of care including preventive measures (preventing future dental problems).
  • Some will settle for nothing less than the best (optimizing dental health and beauty).

You can learn more about Standards of Care in my Free Special Report on Leadership Gifts.

sweet post-doodle - 573Why People Hate Dental Pain

You’re supposed to hate pain.

Pain is actually your friend. Your wake-up-call.

When you put your hand on a hot stove, you’re supposed to feel that immediate unpleasant sensation of pain and pull your hand away.

Pain is actually your friend. Your wake-up-call. It’s a signal for you to take immediate action and offers you a vitally important protection mechanism that helps keep you out of harm.

With Leprosy, people lose their peripheral sensation of pain and that’s how they eventually lose fingers and toes. They can’t feel pain and accidentally harm themselves.

Everyone is wired to seek pleasure and avoid pain. It’s as natural as breathing. The Pleasure-Pain Principle is about that powerful drive and how it dominates many people’s lives.

In accordance to the Pleasure-Pain Principal you continually move towards pleasure and away from pain. Think about the things you love and the things you hate.  The attraction and repulsion you feel compels you to act accordingly.

The great news is comfortable dental care is very achievable nowadays.

As I mentioned earlier, your teeth are a very sensitive part of your body and dental pain can be especially nasty. If you’ve ever felt intense tooth pain, it’s something you don’t forget and definitely something you don’t want to repeat.

Dentistry Without Pain

Dentistry without pain is the goal of modern dental care.

The great news is comfortable dental care is very achievable nowadays.

The only bad news is that it does come with a price tag.

Stay healthy and keep smiling!

Signature for a Toronto Cosmetic Dentist.

Dr. Joe 🙂

Dr. Joe Bulger

About the Author: is a West Toronto dentist. He’s also the founder of Royal York Dental – a respected dental clinic serving Etobicoke since 1950.

Leave a Comment

{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Roxy June 30, 2010 at 3:53 pm


My mother always says, “tooth aches and pains are the worst type of pain a person can ever endure — it’s worse that child birth”. For myself, not having to experience a tooth ache suits me just fine.. Prevention is key for me which is why I think that my mother’s comments have instilled total fear of the unknown in me..

2 Dr. Joe :) June 30, 2010 at 8:51 pm


Your mother did good Roxy. She deserves a hug!
You’ve got a healthy perspective on staying healthy that will serve you well.

3 led modules for signs May 11, 2011 at 10:36 am


if only I realised how important my teeth are I would have got braces. I now have a right mess for teeth..

4 Nathan Woodbury@Dental Website Design January 11, 2012 at 12:24 am


There shouldn’t have any pain if you just have take good care of your teeth properly. With proper guidance and strict maintenance. Pain wouldn’t take place.

5 Mike July 10, 2012 at 7:48 pm


When I feel pain in my teeth, I wish it was just my stomach or head. I really hate pain in my teeth. Thanks for sharing these dental pain management tips.

Click here to visit my website.

6 Neza@toothpaste brands August 19, 2012 at 6:17 pm


What should be the fast solution when some one is very injured in teeth?

7 Dentist@Raritan Dentist November 3, 2012 at 10:59 pm


Neza, the best and fastest solution to a very injured tooth is to visit the dentist. We are the specialists that can fix the problem and heal it to back again. Its worth a consult to figure out what can be done, and you can make the decision what is best for yourself.

8 inland calgary orthodontist November 29, 2012 at 7:10 am


hellos Dr. Joe, from all your blog i find you are really a great writer… the way you write things about dentistry is so convincing that everyone would like to take appointment from you.

9 Jessica April December 4, 2012 at 1:44 am


Very Convincing arguments; the best thing a dentist can do to its patients is to advise them and provide valuable tips on how to adopt a lifestyle that can support a good oral health.Thanks for sharing with us

10 Tate January 3, 2013 at 3:48 pm


I think the fear of pain is one of the reasons why people don’t like to go to the dentist but it really isn’t that bad.

11 aurident February 27, 2013 at 5:36 am


I agree with @mark,everytime I have a toothache, I always wish that I have a headache instead. Toothache makes you feel like your whole body is in pain and your mood is also affected with it, making you feel so grumpy.

12 Out of This World Dentistry June 8, 2013 at 4:25 pm


I totally agree with Jessica April. A dentist should be completely honest and helpful by instilling good dental care habits. This will help our teeth last longer than we could hope for.

13 orthodontist July 14, 2013 at 2:06 am


This is so true. Great dentistry has little to no pain involved.

14 Bao September 4, 2013 at 6:07 pm


If you can maintain a healthy oral hygiene, then you can avoid painful dental visits. Brush twice a day, floss after meals, and avoid eating high acid food.

15 dentist in Tempe September 14, 2013 at 3:30 am


About fear, it is all actually the product of your mind. Latest dental technology has indeed helped in reducing dental fear.

Kuduz for such a great blog post…!

16 Ethan Sophia September 26, 2013 at 3:49 pm


thanks for sharing this article.Interesting!more than billion of people are facing this type of difficulties in all over the globe so we just came to know for their teeth value in their life provide the and this would be great.

17 Ethan Sophia September 26, 2013 at 5:40 pm


Thanks for telling the truth but the teeth pain is not bearable. But if dentistry without pain is there then the people can’t be fear to go to dentist clinic.

18 emergency dentist Staten Island November 5, 2013 at 10:27 am


OMG, I know this horrible toothache, I have bear many times, during RCT, filling and yeah wisdom tooth is itself a great pain, extraction is the best solution.

19 Caleb December 5, 2013 at 10:11 am


The fear of pain is one of the main things that keep people from seeing their dentist. There have been so many advancements in the dental field that prevent pain and help with oral pain management.

20 Dental Surgery Benefits India December 26, 2013 at 2:51 am


Dental pain is very bad. Dental surgery help you to get rid of it.
Now days, lot of advanced technique and technology used to help get rid of dental pain.

21 John February 18, 2014 at 12:12 pm


I lived with severe dental pain for about two years. I had a tooth that was cracked in half and almost everything would make it hurt. I left it there for so long because I hoped to have it fixed, but didn’t have the money. I managed the pain with severe strength oral gel. It would take the pain away for a little while. I finally had it removed.

22 Dr. Joe :) February 18, 2014 at 5:01 pm


Hi John. Not a fun experience for you… It’s tough when treatment decisions are restricted by finances like that. Sometimes taking a tooth out like that is the right move when the crack is significant. And there’s no guarantee a root canal and crown could have held it together for the long run.

23 Jean Paul May 24, 2014 at 7:35 am


Its very pain full, Dental surgery help you to get rid of it..Thank you for sharing..!

24 Rachel June 16, 2014 at 10:39 pm


I have never had a cavity in my life. Thank the Lord for that one. When my teeth hurt, it is because of arthritis and it means a BIG storm is about to roll through the area. I am so thankful for that. I hate going to the dentist. I can’t imagine what a cavity feels like and I hope I never find out.

25 Medecure August 11, 2014 at 9:12 am



I bit worried and tensed..is it safe doing teeth implant? I dont have my last 3 teeth so doc advised me implants, cant go for bridge please guide me on this.

I have book appoint with her on Wednesday..for teeth implants thru medecure.com

Please help!!

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