It's a form of unintentional torture, though. The needle - this dentist, empathetic (empathic?) and positive though he is - does not have Mark's skill at getting those needles in without my feeling anything. So there is at least one and are usually two bites that hurt enough for me to struggle to stay still. Then the scraping of the bone. I think he's cleaning it, and it hurts. There are a couple of other places where he does some work that seem more sensitive, in spite of all the Novocaine.
It seems a form of torture because it is repeated. I can handle this sort of thing once, get through it, but after a few repeats I start to dwell on specific aspects of it and my mind wants to make them bigger. I anticipate. ANd they seem worse than they actually are because my mind makes them worse.
So the trick is to remain calm, take it a minute at a time, not anticipate, just accept. And take those deep breaths. I don't have to take the deep breaths very often but I think I have to talk to myself more as I get through each of these.
I can do anything for a limited period of time.
Sometimes I think of the Gary Larsen cartoon, Aerobics in Hell. Thinking about doing those leg lifts forever...! It's hilarious.