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white spots on gum that appeared suddenly
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white spots on gum that appeared suddenly

I hope you can help me. About a month ago I noticed a dark spot above where my wisdom tooth was removed 17 years ago. I immediately went to the dentist, scared to death it was cancer. He took xrays and examined me and said it was an amalgam tatoo and nothing to worry about. However, the stress of this experience caused me to severely bite my cheeks which of course left a whitened surface. This then scared me into thinking I had thrush and therefore AIDS. I finally got up the nerve this past week to go back to him to ease my mind. He has 30 years of experience and examined my mouth and said he saw nothing that was a problem in ANY way. I had been examining my mouth for over a month since my first visit and saw nothing unusual except the white areas I had bitten (before the biting they were perfectly normal, and all white areas were were along the bite line). Tonight I was finally beginning to convince myself that I was okay and trust my dentist's statement, but when my tongue brushed against the front of my lower gum on the left hand side I felt what appeared to be granules. When I looked in my mouth I saw little white spots in about a half an inch area. I wiped it with a tissue and they came off with some bleeding underneath. I had not seen them before and it would seem to be impossible for the dentist to have missed them. They were obvious. Before my visit to the dentist I was at the point of looking in my mouth MANY times a day with a flashlight and these would be impossible to miss. Is it possible for thrush to appear so rapidly, just 2 after my exam? I myself did not see anything yesterday. Could something else, like extreme stress cause this. I have been worried and terrified of this since my first visit to the dentist when he checked the wisdom tooth. It seems strange to me that my dentist would tell me he saw nothing just two days ago and now this has appeared. Could it be something else entirely. (I hope so!) I am working with a psychologist who was beginning to get my seemingly unfounded fears in check when now this has happened. In every other way I am healthy. No weight loss, normal appetite, temperature in normal range always, have lots of energy, no night sweats, no skin lesions. None of the other symptoms of HIV or AIDS. Nothing that would be considered high risk behavior in over 10 years. Have not had the flu or other illnesses in a VERY long time. About the only thing I get once in a while is a cold, but usually only one every couple of years. The last time I took antibotics was for a dental procedure over 6 months ago. I do drink a lot of soda that has sugar. I am looking for some glimmer of hope here. I am neither emotionally or mentally ready to take an HIV test at this time. It is late at night here and I am so scared and worried. I hope you can tell me something that might help easy my mind a little. I feel foolish and childish to be so worried and scared, but I am so terrified at this point. Thank you for any help and hope.
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242489_tn?1210500813
Anything that appeared so quickly (you're right to say the dentist couldn't possibly have missed it) couldn't be anything serious.  Thrush doesn't look like little white spots anyway.

I don't think you emotionally ready not to take an HIV test--and pronto.  You cannot go on examining your mouth with a flashlight and failing to respond to perfectly reasonable, and undoubtedly accurate, reassurance.

Please get an HIV test--it will be negative--and get the psychological (and if necessary psychopharmacological) help you need to regain your composure.

Best.

Dr. Rockoff
5 Comments
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Avatar_m_tn
I forgot to mention that I am a moderate to heavy smoker, and of course, with the stress I am under I have probably been smoking a little more than normal. I do hope you can offer me some hope.
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Avatar_m_tn
I just remembered that about a week ago I began placing my cigarette on the same side of my mouth where I found the small white area on the gums. The smoke would exit the cigarette very near to the place where it is located. Could that be what caused it? I wiped the white off over 15 hours ago. How much time would it take for it to reappear in that same spot it it were thrush? Sorry for so many questions, but I am literally terrified. I did speak to my psychologist and she strongly feels that this has occurred due to the immense stress I have been under for many months. Wish I could believe her, but my poor mind will not let me.
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242489_tn?1210500813
Please believe her, get the testing and help you need, and move on.

Dr. Rockoff
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Avatar_m_tn
First, thank you very very much for your opinion. At this point I continue to worry, but you have dropped my stress level greatly. I am working with my psychologist, a very caring and knowledgable lady to get a handle on this anxiety. It started back in June when a number of stress inducers came into play and it snowballed quickly.  I recently moved back here from Spain where I lived for 12 years and have not built up a good support system here yet. I have never worried much about health problems in the past. My psychologist will be working with an MD who can prescribe proper medications to help me break this cycle. Believe me, I am not enjoying this at all. Hopefully with their help (and your boost of course) I can get to the point of putting this into its proper perspective and move on and begin enjoying my life again. Thank you again for all of the help and reassurance you gave me, and I am sure the rest of the participants in this forum. Wish you lived in Tampa, would love having you as my doctor.

Warm regards,
John
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