While no one enjoys going to the dentist, there are many people who absolutely dread the experience and avoid it at all costs. Whether it’s caused by a bad experience in the past or a more general phobia, dental anxiety is one of the main reasons people don’t seek treatment when they need it. This often leads to complications that require more difficult and expensive treatments in the end.
If you suffer from dental anxiety, you’re probably an expert at finding excuses not to go to the dentist. It’s understandable. However, overcoming this fear and booking your visits twice per year will help you achieve a healthy smile with a minimum amount of time spent in the dentist’s chair.
Let’s have a look at the most common dental fears and some useful tips to finally muster up the courage and book in your appointment!
Fear of needles
If you got chills down your spine just by reading the words, you’re not the only one! Fear of needles is one of the most common dental (and non-dental!) phobias in the world, with 1 in 5 people suffering from it.
While it’s recommended that the dentist puts your tooth to sleep so that your experience throughout the procedure is a painless one, they can always try without the numbing as your preference and pain tolerance comes first. It’s recommended you let your dentist know about your concerns.
Fear of pain
Fear of pain is another very common obstacle in the way of seeking dental care. Many times, it’s a result of a bad experience in the past. Trauma can generate intense anxiety and needs to be managed before a patient can confidently go to the dentist.
Modern science allows for many options when it comes to numbing and sedation. Local anaesthesia is a safe procedure that takes away the unpleasantness of dental treatment. For more advanced surgeries (like impacted wisdom tooth extraction), you can opt for general or relative anesthesia.
If you tense up before a procedure, you can become more sensitive to pain. So a good trick is to learn relaxation techniques such as deep breathing that can help you overcome the discomfort.
Fear of the drill
More often than not, people fear the sound of the drill and the feeling associated with it. If proper numbing is in place, you’ll only experience the vibrations and pressure, without any pain.
Since this is such a common issue among patients, dentists came up with creative solutions like providing headphones and putting something up on the TV screen to help distract you.. Ask your dentist what they can do to help you get your mind off…the drill.
Tips to overcome dental anxiety
Many people who live with dental anxiety manage to overcome it by applying a few useful tricks:
- Choose a dentist that listens and makes you feel comfortable. This is essential, because if you feel like you’re in good hands, your dental anxiety will decrease considerably.
- Ask your dentist to pre-warn you about sensations you might experience during the procedure.
- Learn relaxation techniques like deep breathing and mindfulness. These help you unwind physically and mentally, which in turn changes your perception of pain.
We help patients with dental anxiety all the time and we’re confident that we can make you feel more comfortable with any procedure you might need. Contact your dentist in Moores Pocket to book in your appointment!Leave a reply →