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Dental Anxiety and Dental Fear

Dental Anxiety and Dental Fear

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.

But the reality is completely different and that’s why we will try to eliminate these preconceptions, so that our clients come to the dentist with pleasure. Patient confidence, comfort and relaxation are part of the good practice of any dentist.

Dr. Florin Arhiri and the staff at Premier Smiles are happy to do whatever they can to reduce anxiety, allay fears and provide painless, quick treatments.

Nowadays, medical technology has advanced significantly. Thus, dentists have the opportunity to replace painful utensils that cause an annoying sound with painless laser beams. There are also a wide variety of safe anesthetics created to eliminate pain and reduce anxiety during appointments.

You wonder what the most common fears of a dentist are?

  •  Fear of of needles / injections;
  •  Fear of pain;
  •  Fear of the dentist as a person;
  •  Fear of embarrassment about the condition of teeth;
  •  Fear of gagging;
  •  Fear of injections;
  •  Fear of loss of control;
  •  Fear of not becoming numb when injected with Novocain;
  •  Fear of the hand piece (or the drill).


How we can overcome anxiety?


We know that a visit to the dentist can often be overwhelming. It is said that approximately up to 35 million people do not visit the dental office at all because they are too scared. Receiving regular dental check ups and cleanings is very important. It is the easiest way to maintain excellent oral hygiene and reduce the need for more complex treatments.

Here are some tips to help reduce dental fear and anxiety:

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 (for example, Vicks® Chloraseptic® Throat Spray) 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 Smile you are in good hands!