How we can overcome dental anxiety? Dental anxiety and phobia result in avoidance of dental care. It is a frequently encountered problem in dental offices. The fear of the dentist is often found among patients of all ages, and in some cases this fear turns into anxiety. Whether it is caused by unpleasant past experiences or simply because of the preconception that the dentist causes pain and pull out teeth, this fear is very common.
These patients need to be identified at the earliest opportunity and their concerns addressed. The initial interaction between the dentist and the patient can reveal the presence of anxiety, fear, and phobia.
Talk to the dentist – Though it can be hard to talk about irrational fears with a stranger, the dentist can take extra precautions during visits if fears and anxiety are communicated. Bring a portable music player – Music acts as a relaxant and also drowns out any fear-producing noises. Listening to calming music throughout the appointment will help to reduce anxiety. Spray the throat – Throat sprays can actually control the gag reflex. Two or three sprays will usually keep the reflex under control for about an hour. Agree on a signal – Many people are afraid that the dentist will not know they are in significant pain during the appointment, and will carry on the procedure regardless.
The best way to solve this problem is to agree on a “stop” hand signal with the dentist. Both parties can easily understand signals like raising the hand or tapping on the chair. Take a mirror – Watching the procedure can help keep reality at the forefront of the mind. Not being able to see what is happening can increase anxiety. Sedation – If there is no other way to cope, sedation offers an excellent option for many people. There are several types of sedation, but the general premise behind them is the same: the patient regains their faculties after treatment is complete.
Ask about alternatives – Advances in technology mean that dental microsurgery is now an option. Lasers can be used to prepare teeth for fillings, whiten teeth and remove staining. Discuss all the options with the dentist and decide on one that is effective and produces minimal anxiety.
If you have questions or concerns about how the dentist will perform the procedure, please contact our practice. At Premier Smiles you are in good hands!