Phobia: “an extreme or irrational fear of or aversion to something.”
Everyone has their fears. It could be, the oh-so popular arachnophobia (fear of spiders), the fear of clowns (coulrophobia), acrophobia (the fear of heights), or Pteromerhanophobia (fear of flying). However there is one phobia out there that can cause serious problems when it comes to your oral health.
The fear of dental treatments, unfortunately, is common. Many people get anxiety over the thought of having to visit a dental office. This anxiety may come from previous experiences, so your memory plays a big part in how you feel about having dental work done, such as:
- Thinking about specific experiences that you may have had that were unpleasant can be damaging to your confidence. Instead, think about the positive ones to counteract the negative. For example, you may have had a not-so-great root canal once, but the memory of a pain free cavity filling can do wonders for your anxiety level
- If you can’t pinpoint an experience or memory that is causing you to feel anxious, perhaps it comes from a story shared by a friend or family member. Understanding that their horror stories are not yours can help calm the nerves
- Sometimes simply acknowledging that you have dental fears can be the key to overcoming them
Dental Procedures Have Improved Immensely
Dental practices have taken leaps and bounds to improve the dental experience in recent years. No longer are the days when dentists used medieval drills and uncomfortably large anesthetic needles. Many dental offices have taken steps to make their office less “clinical or hospital like” by changing color palettes throughout the office and using the scent of infused essential oils to make even the most anxious feel at ease.
Finding the Right Doctor
The best way to find the right dentist for you is to ask friends and family for recommendations. They will have your best interest in mind and are less likely to steer you into the wrong direction. Most dental offices will have testimonials and reviews online. Take a moment to research and you’ll find the one that is a good fit for you.
Our office is happy to schedule a consultation to make sure that you feel comfortable with our staff. We will sit down and talk through and questions and concerns that you may have about any dental procedure you may be in need of.
Once you have established a relationship with the dentist of your choice, setting up a series of visits will help you stay ahead of your anxiety and gradually your dental anxiety will become a thing of the past.
Communication is King
Being able to communicate with your dentist is big deal. If for any reason you become uncomfortable with a procedure, you can ask us to stop and we can discuss the next step to bring down your anxiety levels and put you at ease.
Bring headphones to your visit and listen to you favorite music, you can focus on the enjoyment of sounds that you love and take the focus off of the dental procedure. Listening to the soothing sound of your favorite crooner can be a miracle worker for dental fear.
You can also enlist a friend or family to come with you. Having a loved one by your side can be comforting and make your visit less frightening, by knowing that you are not there alone.
No matter how big or how small your dental anxiety may be, we are here to listen and cater to your needs. From routine check-ups to more complex treatments, we want your experience with us to be the best it can possible be. Call us today and our friendly and knowledgeable staff can answer any questions you may have to help you conquer your dental fears.