Dental fear is a common problem that many people face. However, dental fear often prevents patients from visiting the dentist. The fear of the dentist is often due to bad experiences in the past. This fear can prevent patients from receiving the dental care they need.
Discuss your dental fears
Being honest with your dentist about your fear will help develop a treatment plan that will address your specific concerns. Some patients prefer to be unaware of what is happening during a procedure; others want to be kept updated throughout. Your dentist can help guide you to an option that will suit you best.
Discussing your worries can also help ease them over time through familiarity. Many patients who experienced initial anxiety at their first visit to the dentist report feeling more comfortable at subsequent visits. Through regular checkups and dental treatments, many feel relieved to see that everything actually isn’t so bad after all!
Patients who have been avoiding dental care out of irrational fears tend to feel more at ease after experiencing the gentle and compassionate care offered at their dentists’ offices. Consider meeting with a sedation dentist who offers multiple forms of aid to help you comfortably overcome your fears and get the care you need.
For patients with anxiety concerning needles or the noise of the drill, a dentist can offer topical numbing agents or a sedative gas to calm nerves.
Agree on a signal
Be sure to talk with your dentist about your fears and concerns, and agree on a signal to stop the procedure immediately in case it’s too overwhelming. Patients can use hand signals or tap on the table to signal their discomfort.
Take a friend or family member with you for support
Your dental visit is the perfect opportunity for you to speak up about your dental anxiety and share your fears with your dental care provider. This discussion can help your dentist better understand your situation and come up with solutions to ease your anxiety and help you feel more comfortable during your dental treatments. If you decide to bring someone with you to your dental appointment, make sure you ask them if they feel comfortable holding your hand or reassuring you while you are getting treated. If you are getting IV anesthesia, they can also help you during or after the procedure.
Bring distractions to occupy your mind during procedures
Leave your worries at home and take along some forms of entertainment to help you stay calm and relaxed during your dental procedures. Listen to your favorite music, read a magazine or a comic book, watch a movie or play on an electronic device. These activities will help you stay distracted from the procedure that is being performed. Talk to your dentist about what will work best for you.
Consider sedation dentistry
Sedation dentistry can be very beneficial in helping patients overcome their fear of dental procedures and in helping them relax during their treatment. There are many types of sedation available depending on the level of relaxation needed. The dentist will determine which type of sedation is most appropriate for you based on the level of anxiety you are experiencing and the type of procedure you are having performed. Mild to moderate levels of sedation are typically considered safer for patients. Patients should note that they will be required to have a family member or friend present to drive them home, as they will still be under the effects of the sedatives for a few hours after treatment. With advancements in technology and research, dentists can provide safer options to help patients achieve their oral health goals.
At Floss Family Dentistry, we offer high-quality dental services using advanced technology. To learn more or to schedule an appointment with us, call us at (801) 610-7200 or visit our dental office at 2183 West Main Street, Suite 301A, Lehi, UT 84043.