Coping With Dental Phobia

Most people fear going to the dentist. Just the thought of going for a dental checkup is enough to make some people anxious. The fear of going to the dentist starts early. Most of the time, parents threaten their kids by saying they will bring them to the dentist if they do not brush their teeth. Threats such as this can leave a lasting impression on the child, and can carry over to adulthood.

A painful experience in a dental clinic at a young age can also trigger anxiety that does not go away easily. Most patients fear going to the dentist because of the syringes used for injecting agents into the gums. Nowadays, the tools used in dentistry have greatly evolved. The needles used for syringes are now disposable and are super thin, making injections virtually painless. Dental patches and anesthetic gels that help significantly reduce pain are also available.

A few distractions are also used by most dentists to distract patients, and shift their attention from the dental procedure. Big screen TVs, tablets, MP3 players for your listening pleasure, and virtual reality glasses are just some of the tools used to keep your mind wandering to a different realm, thus easing your anxiety. A modern dental clinic may also make use of bright colors on the walls, some fresh flowers, inviting decors, and miniature waterfalls to help keep patients calm and relaxed.

How Can You Ease Your Dental Phobia?

Here are some suggestions that you can try to help reduce your fear of going to the dentist:

1. Talk with your dentist. Set up an appointment with your dentist in Columbia, MD, and talk about your fear. If your dentist does not return your call, find another one. A good dentist understands that a patient needs to talk about their fears in order to feel at ease.

2. Prepare yourself. Before undergoing any dental procedure, ask your dentist what you can expect. How will the procedure be done? How long will it take? Do not be afraid to ask. It is important that you know you are in control of your situation.

3. Give your dentist a cue. Before you start with any procedure, talk to your dentist about establishing a sign such as raising your hand when you feel uncomfortable, and you need them to stop right away.

You can also ask your dentist about the sedation options available to calm your nerves. Some dentists administer the so-called “laughing gas” or nitrous oxide, while others perform intravenous conscious sedation. These medications help reduce pain and discomfort while you are awake. These will also help lessen your anxiety if you think of your dentist as someone who cares as much about your safety and comfort as they do about your teeth.