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Elgin, IL

Afraid of the Dentist? Elgin Practice Caters to People Like Us

Posted by 
Sherry McGuinn
Sherry McGuinn
 2021-05-16

This is a game-changer for dental-phobes

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EngravingImage by Gregory Roose, Pixabay

For most of my life, I've feared going to the dentist. Actually, "fear" is too mild a word. I developed a big-time phobia of anything having to do with dental "procedures." Ugh! Just that word!

Over twenty years ago, when my husband and I still lived in Chicago, I had found a dentist with whom I could actually "live with." He was exceptionally skilled and was adept at all the latest procedures. I remember that he used this amazing, gizmo for administering novocaine that felt nothing like the painful injections of old. He explained that the conduit for the novocaine was set on a timer so that it entered the gums slowly. The reason being, he said, was that novocaine shots hurt because typically, the numbing agent enters the gums too quickly, and apparently, slowing down the process make all the difference.

I'm not very technical, but I can tell you it worked. As someone who has endured countless injections into her very sensitive gums for deep cleanings and scalings and the like, this new procedure was monumental for me.

You see, even though I am hyper-attentive to my oral hygiene, I've always had "weak" gums and as a result, I've had to undergo deep cleanings on a regular basis. A former dentist of mine who also treated my whole family years ago, was an excellent technician, but he was old-school and painful, whole-mouth injections were routine.

Eventually, as I suffer from anxiety and OCD, just the thought of going to the dentist sent me into an emotional tailspin, especially since, after moving to Elgin, driving to Chicago to visit the guy who I'd come to trust, wasn't an option.

Finally, I couldn't ignore the fact that I had something going on in my mouth that needed attention, and pronto.

So, I did what everybody does: A hell of a lot of Googling, along with reading local reviews and the like. I finally came across a dental practice that seemed to have it all: The latest techniques, including sedation dentistry, a specialty of treating fearful patients, and an understanding, caring staff.

It's Rice Dental, located on McLean Boulevard in Elgin. And, if you're one of the many who suffers from extreme anxiety at the thought of any kind of dental procedure, I urge you to run, not walk to this place. Or, at the very least call and schedule a consultation.

Dr. David Rice is a skilled and compassionate practitioner. He can take one look at you and gauge your mental state while in the chair.

During my consultation, I found out that unfortunately, I needed a lot of work. Root canal, bone transplant followed by a dental implant...a LOT of work. Not to mention, a couple of lengthy sessions with their excellent hygienist.

Dr. Rice took the time to explain all my options and the one that appealed to me the most, was full-on sedation, with an IV, so our first session together could be a long one, in order to complete more work in one visit.

I was all for that! Of course, the downside is insurance. (Isn't it always?) Depending upon what needs to be done, and why, you need to check with your provider to find out exactly what's covered

For me, it was a no-brainer. There was no other way I could get my butt in that chair and allow Dr. Rice to do his job.

Let me tell you how easy it was: They stuck the IV in and that's all she wrote, folks. I woke up on the other side feeling great and remembering nothing. This may sound odd, but it was the best experience I've ever had at a dentist's office.

Dr. Rice called me that evening to check up on my pain level, etc., happily I was able to tell him that I was doing just fine.

That was nearly twenty years ago and Dr. Rice is still our dentist.

You should know that aside from general sedation, Rice Dental also offers sedation by pill form, which is more of a "memory scrubber," in the sense that you won't know what's going on, nor will your care, and also, nitrous oxide, or "laughing gas."

I'm not a shill for Rice Dental. I'm writing this because I know there are countless people, like myself, who avoid taking care of their dental issues due to fear and I want them to realize their options.

Because the unfortunate reality is that teeth and gum issues don't resolve on their own. They just get worse, so if you're like me, call Rice Dental and ask for Chandra. She'll give you a rundown of everything the practice has to offer.

Moreover, she'll calm your fears. She did, mine.

Thanks for reading.