No need for novocaine

| Life in Holland | 2 Comments

Having a root canal done without a local anesthetic like novocaine is definitely not my idea of passing an enjoyable Sunday afternoon. This is my free day of uneventfulness, meant for fun and relaxation, not for going to the dentist of all places.

Last night I barely slept because of the throbbing pain in my molar which has been getting steadily worse in the last week. This morning I was even ready to yank the damn tooth out myself if it would remove that awful pain.

Instead I made an appointment with the backup dentist who was on call, hoping the best I could that he could relieve the main (preferably without having to pull the molar).

His conclusion was to conduct immediate root canal and he started drilling, probing and hacking. No I would not need novocaine, he kept on insisting, repeating that he was 'almost' done for the next ten minutes.

My legs were flailing all over the place and my clenched fists held tightly to the side. My skin became clammy and the back of my shirt was drenched in sweat. I'm almost there he kept saying. Was I exaggerating and acting like a big baby?

When he was done, I could feel my heartbeat pounding and my hands felt jittery. I asked him nervously what he had just done, and he replied that that was a quick root canal. As if it was nothing more than a simple procedure not to cause the least amount of consternation.

Congratulations, that was my very first root canal and I survived thank you!

All in all, the pain has receded and I hope that I can continue the fun-filled life of painlessly chewing and drinking delicacies for many years to come. In the olden days they would have just yanked out the molar and thrown it across the street, so I should feel grateful and relieved.


I cannot believe you had a root canal without novocaine. I had several, each time with an anesthetic and could not imagine the suffering your dentist imposed. Isn't Holland a civilized country? I have to tell Tom B. that story when I go next week for a cleaning. This is cruelty at best !!!

Civilized yes in general I would say. However, in some things very strange ideas indeed. The dentist asked me afterwards if the pain had become less than before my visit, and indeed it had amazingly enough. See he told me. If I had been still numbed by the novocain then I would not have been able to tell.

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