Natural Ways To Cope With Dental Anxiety
If youre afraid of the dentist, dont worry. Youre one of three people in the US who has dental anxiety. Its an uncomfortable phobia to have because it prevents some people from getting the dental care they need. So, dont let dental anxiety and phobia win. Read these useful tips to help you conquer your fear of the dentist and sit in that chair comfortably.
What Is Dental Phobia
Around the world, there are millions of people who are afraid to go to the dentist. Some of this fear stems from one bad experience or the sheer idea of a dentist with sharp tools. Although dental phobia is associated with children, it does not discriminate based on age. There are many adults who avoid the dentist altogether due to this irrational phobia. Fortunately, it can be controlled. Here are some tips for overcoming your dental phobia.
How To Cope With Dental Anxiety
- Post category:Dental Anxiety
Dental anxiety is one of the most common phobias that we come across. The phobia is so strong at times that people actually, completely avoid visiting a dentist, even if the problem amplifies. If the fear persists and one absolutely ignores their dental issues due to the anxiety, it really can turn out to be detrimental for your oral hygiene as it is also an incredibly important part of your health. Therefore, it becomes more than necessary to overcome your dental anxiety through certain psychological methods.
You can use the following tips to help cope with your dental phobia.
- Talking to your family and friends
You can talk about your dental fear with your family and friends. Talking to them might help in bringing in some support and subsiding the fear for the good.
- Have a word with your dentist
Who else will make you better understand about your problem and the stages to cure it! Talking to your dentist may help as he/she is the one going to be dealing with your oral care. He/she should understand the precise anxiousness and try to work with you to make you feel comfortable.
- Relaxation techniques
It is very important to control your anxious emotions and bring yourself at ease. Use relaxation and breathing techniques, relax your body and mind by listening to music, having conversations with your dentist, or anything else that can relax and distract you from the anxiety.
- Dental Support Groups
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Dental Anxiety Is Very Common And Often A Very Natural Response
First off, theres nothing abnormal or strange about having dental anxiety. Theres no reason to feel bad about your anxiety or feel frustrated with yourself for having it. In fact, as much as 20% of the adult population has moderate to severe dental anxiety.
Dental anxiety stems from a perceived notion or anticipation that you may experience either physical or emotional pain. From an instinctual perspective, our mouths are a very sensitive area on our bodies, and one thats also quite personal. While our bodies are visible during our daily lives, rarely would someone, except ourselves, take a peek inside our mouths. These factors can lead to very natural emotional responses of vulnerability and unease.
Well Put Your Worries To Rest
By utilizing the latest techniques, you can relax knowing that your treatments will be carried-out with precision. At Noel T. Paredes, DDS, you can expect minimal pain and a speedy recovery. Contact our Fresno office to schedule your upcoming dental appointment by calling -824-9524. Well be sure to keep you comfortable throughout your treatment.
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Common Reasons People Fear Going To The Dentist
There are a number of reasons people avoid the dentist. They include:
- A painful or unpleasant past experience: Dental fear often starts in childhood. It could stem from an unpleasant or painful past experience at the dentist, or from horror stories people hear from others or the media. Thanks to the many advances in dentistry made over the years, most of todays dental procedures involve considerably less pain and often none at all.
- Fear of needles: When it comes to dental procedures, many people are terrified of needles. Others fear that the anesthesia wont work on them, or that it wont kick in before the procedure begins.
- Embarrassment: Whether they let a toothache linger for too long or feel embarrassed about their teeth, some people fear being judged or shamed by their dentist. Or they might feel afraid of getting bad news.
- Loss of control: Many people are uncomfortable with the dentist or hygienist working so physically close to their face. Others feel self-conscious or out of control when theyre sitting in a dentists chair with mouth wide open, unable to see whats going on.
Dental Fear #4 Embarrassment About Bad Teeth
Your dentist deals with damaged teeth and gums every day. Theres a good chance theyve seen many people with worse dental problems than yours. So, relax. Its their job to help people prevent dental problems. But its also part of their job to deal with damaged teeth and help you get them as healthy as they can be.
You may like to call your dentist and let them know youre embarrassed about the state of your teeth but would like their help to fix them. This can help to break the ice. It also lets them know you have anxieties about it. You may find that knowing your dentist is already aware may help you feel more relaxed during your visit.
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How To Cope With Extreme Dental Anxiety
If the unmistakable whine of the dentist’s drill has you running for cover, you need to read this
According to healthcare group Bupa, around one in 10 UK adults suffers from extreme dental anxiety the kind of fear that makes you tremble, sweat, feel sick and can bring on panic attacks.
Ondontophobia, to use the correct medical term, is a serious condition that increases the sufferer’s risk of gum disease , tooth decay and oral cancer, simply because they avoid going to the dentist unless it’s absolutely essential and a proportion of these, who are known as dentally phobic, never go at all, choosing to endure the pain of cavities and chipped or broken teeth rather than take their chances in the dentist’s chair.
“For those with who are dentally phobic, it’s unlikely they’d get near the surgery, let alone allow a dentist to look in their mouths,” says Professor Gerald Humphris, a clinical researcher into dental phobia from the University of St Andrews. “It can be a problem that’s very deep-seated, often triggered by a bad experience in childhood, and requires sensitive and careful handling from a sympathetic dentist who’s prepared to spend time with a nervous patient. Sufferers may also need sessions with a clinical psychologist or psychotherapist to uncover the root of the problem and help change they way they think about dental treatment.”
Simple Tricks For Overcoming Dental Anxiety Forever
At Union Dental Center, our goal is to help every single patient feel completely relaxed, at ease, and comfortable. But with over 80% of Americans suffering from some level of dental anxiety, we have our work cut out for ourselves. Know that youre not alone and we have helped thousands of people overcome their fear with a variety of techniques.
Its a challenge we happily accept, and were dedicated to changing our patients perception of what it means to go to the dentist.
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Who Can Be Affected By Dental Anxiety
Dental anxiety is common and can affect people of any age.
Children who have had bad dental experiences in most cases can overcome their fear if the situation is managed well and they are well cared for and supported during further dental visits. Adults who are anxious about dental care tend to remain anxious throughout life.
Many anxious dental patients can find a dentist who is sympathetic to their situation, so they are able to cope with going to the dentist.
The Dental Office Environment
Dental office ambience can play a significant role in initiating dental fear and anxiety. Receptionists, dental nurses, and dental hygienists are crucial personnel in creating an apt atmosphere in the dental office. They should be positive and caring, and elicit information from the patients in a unhurried concerned tone to make the patients comfortable. The office atmosphere can be made calm and unthreatening by the playing of soft music and avoidance of bright lights. A slightly cooler dental office was preferred by individuals in a study by Bare and Dundes. The walls can be adorned with posters and pictures, the waiting area supplied with ample books and magazines. The sounds produced from the instruments in the treatment room should be muted by closing the door. Importantly, anxious patients should not be made to wait too long, so that they have less time to absorb negative experiences additionally longer waiting times give them time to recall the threatening stimuli.,
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Systematic Desensitization Or Exposure Therapy
Wolpes technique, known as systematic desensitization, is based on relaxation and played a very prominent role in the evolution of behavior therapy during the 1960s and 1970s. The treatment procedure is carried out in multiple sessions. The use of systematic desensitization involves three sets of activities. Encourage the patients to discuss their status of fear and anxiety, in order to construct a hierarchy of feared dental situations, from the least to the most anxiety-provoking. Teach the patient relaxation techniques. The most commonly used techniques are breathing and muscle relaxation. The final step is to gradually expose the patient to these situations in the hierarchy, from the least to the most anxiety-promoting.,,
When it is difficult to expose the patient directly to the dental setting, it may be appropriate to instruct the patients to practice imaginary systematic desensitization, wherein the patients are encouraged to imagine that they are entering the dental clinic, able to sit in the dental chair, and eventually able to receive dental treatment. Flooding or implosion therapy is an intensive form of in vivo exposure therapy for treating phobias. The patient is confronted with the feared stimuli for repeated and prolonged duration until they experience a reduction in their anxiety level. The use of this technique requires more caution, due to adverse effects and limited evidence in the literature.
What To Do About Dental Fear And Anxiety
If youre wondering whether you should talk with your dental provider about your fears and worries, the answer is definitely yes.
If your provider knows what your fears are, he or she can better work with you to determine the best ways to make you less anxious and more comfortable.
Here are some strategies to help you cope:
- Ask your dental provider to explain whats happening at every stage of the appointment or procedure so that you can mentally prepare for whats to come.
- Establish a stop signal, such as raising your hand, to let your provider know that youd like them to stop what theyre doing immediately. Use it if you become uncomfortable, want to rinse your mouth or need to catch your breath.
- If sounds are the issue, we frequently tell people to use earbuds to listen to their favorite music, Dr. Haberkamp says. Well tap them on the shoulder if we need their attention.
- If your anxiety is severe, your dentist might recommend using nitrous oxide gas or IV sedation to help calm it.
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Find The Appointment Schedule That Works For You
All of my appointments took about a year to do. I tried to do one every other month. Initially, I wanted to get it done as soon as possible, but I knew that it would drain and overwhelm me very quickly.
So, I tried to schedule appointments during low-stress times and sometimes it was still too much. If I found an appointment coming up and I just didnt have the ability to go because my dental anxiety was too high for other reasons I rescheduled.
Keep Up Your Dental Hygiene Routine
While this tip doesnt help you cope with dental anxiety directly, it definitely helps you avoid the dentist. If you commit to a regular dental hygiene routine, the chances of you needing a major procedure are lower.
Youll still need regular dental exams and cleanings as part of your preventive care. But, these are painless and quick procedures. That means you can be out of the dentists chair quickly.
Brush your teeth, floss, scrape your tongue, and use mouthwash twice every day for healthy teeth and a happy mouth. But, dont brush too hard. And be sure to give up bad habits that destroy your teeth.
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Terrific Dentist Anxiety Tips That Will Save Your Smile
Does the idea of going to the dentist make you queasy? Youre not alone dental phobia is a real thing, but its possible to overcome it. Keep reading for ten dental anxiety tips that will help to keep your teeth and gums in terrific shape.
How Dental Anxiety Or Phobia Can Affect Your Oral Health
Avoiding the dentist can result in dental disease getting worse, a greater need for emergency care or more complex treatment. It can also feed the underlying problem of dental anxiety. This is known as the vicious cycle of dental anxiety.
Regular dental check-ups, cleans and X-rays of the teeth can prevent dental disease and help the dentist find any problems early, so that simpler and less invasive treatments are needed. During regular check-ups, dentists also check for signs of mouth cancer, which is especially important for those who smoke or regularly drink alcohol, and even more so for those who do both. If you notice a mouth ulcer that lasts for longer than 2 weeks, get it checked by a dentist as soon as you can.
Most dental disease is lifestyle-related and preventable. By avoiding going to the dentist, not only are you more likely to need more complex treatments when you do finally attend, but you are also missing out on learning how to better care for your oral health.
The lifestyle factors that lead to dental disease are very similar to those that lead to diabetes, obesity, heart disease, stroke and some cancers . So, taking care of your oral and general health and remembering to brush your teeth twice a day and floss once a day are very important.
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