If you have ever had a bad experience at the dentist, have trouble getting numb, or put off dental appointments for so long that your teeth are messed up, look up your local sedation dentist. I've had multiple bad experiences with dentists throughout my life basically because they could never get me numb.
I had my first appointment with a sedation dentist this morning for a cleaning. My goodness, the complete difference! I wasn't rinsing out chunks of my gum and blood. There was absolutely no pain or discomfort. And afterwards when my teeth were all clean, I had no gum bleeding. Unfortunately, I do have cavities (that's what you get by going for 9 months without dental insurance).
Also, they can give you lots of medication for any dental anxiety. I don't have cleaning anxiety, just procedure anxiety. So, for my fillings we're going to try nitrous oxide so I can actually go back to work afterwards. If it wasn't nitrous oxide, I'd take valium. I LOVE valium! I understand why it was the housewife drug of choice for years.