Posted by Healthy Smiles of Birmingham on Mar 6 2023, 09:13 PM
Dental anxiety is a growing problem. Millions of people avoid going to the dentist due to fear. The fear of the dentist can be detrimental as it can lead to severe oral health issues.
Discuss your fears with your dentist
The dentist must have an understanding of you in order to be able to help you deal with your fear. You must talk about your fears and concerns regarding the procedure. This way, the dentist will know where you are coming from and will find it easier to put you at ease. You can talk about the sights, smells, and sounds of the office to help calm you down. Your dentist may also request that you sit in the waiting area for a few minutes before the procedure begins to give you enough time for relaxation. Digital technology, such as televisions and headphones, may also be available to help you distract your attention from the sounds of the treatment room.
If you are concerned about pain during a procedure, tell your dentist so he or she can take preventive measures. Most dentists give patients some type of anesthesia before administering treatment to ease pain and anxiety. Your dentist may administer topical numbing gel or give you a sedative pill to take before the appointment. If your fear is more severe and prevents you from getting necessary dental care, ask your dentist if conscious sedation is an option. With this method, you will remain awake but will be in a state of extreme relaxation.
Agree on a signal
Agree on a signal that you can give to your dentist if you need to take a break or stop a procedure. He or she will know not to continue until you give the signal.
Take a friend or family member with you for emotional support
A visit to the dental office can be a bit scary for some people. Bringing someone you trust along for a visit can help you overcome your anxiety and fear in a healthy way. You can talk to this person about your fears and concerns during the entire treatment process to ensure everything is going smoothly for you. Some dentists may even allow you to bring a friend or family member into the operatory during the procedure to give you some additional support.
Bring a distraction to occupy your mind during procedures
Bringing any distractions will help to keep your mind occupied and away from your fear. You can bring a book to read, listen to music, or a podcast while your dentist is working. Be sure to bring your headphones so that you don’t disturb the staff and other patients. Talk to your dentist as well – ask if they allow for music to be played during treatments.
You can also bring a stress ball that you can squeeze when you feel anxious. This can distract you from your fear and help calm you down.
Consider sedation dentistry
While these tips help you feel less anxious about a procedure, it’s never too late to seek professional help for your phobia. Consider sedation dentistry to help you overcome your fear of dental procedures so you can receive the dental care that you need. Contact our office today to schedule your consultation!
Visit Healthy Smiles of Birmingham at 100 Heatherbrooke Park Dr Suite A, Birmingham, AL 35242 for a wonderful dental experience. Contact us at (205) 991-9535 or schedule an appointment online.
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