Fear keeps many individuals from receiving the dental work they need to maintain strong oral health. In fact, is it the reason approximately 30 million Americans skip their regular dental visits every year. Here are a few tips to help individuals overcome this anxiety and step back into the dentist office once again.
Arrive at Your Appointments Early
While you don’t want to spend more time in the dentist office than is necessary, by arriving at your appointments early, you can better adjust to the environment before your actual exam begins. This helps you become acquainted with some of the sounds, smells, and even the temperature in the office.
Find a Dentist You Trust
When you find a dental professional who you trust, you feel more confident and comfortable in their office. You are less tense and worried about every sound and movement they are making. If you are truly nervous, discuss your fear with the dentist. A good dentist will do all they can to make the experience an enjoyable one for you.
Some dental professionals are certified to sedate you and make you feel more comfortable and relaxed during the exam. Oral sedation, for example, is a popular option as it is simply a small pill that will help ease your anxiety and fear. It decreases your consciousness but you are still fully awake during the procedure. You will also be able to respond to instructions and commands given to you by the dentist and staff.
Bring a Friend with You
Sometimes a familiar face is all it takes to ease some of your fears and worries. You can bring a close family member and friend and have them sit near you while receiving your dental work. Ask them to distract you so your mind is focused on other things, not the dental work being completed. If a friend or family member can’t come with you, listen to music or a podcast during the exam.
Maintain Strong Oral Habits
If you want to decrease the anxiety and fear of the dentist, you must care for your teeth at home. This will decrease the amount of dental work that is needed and you will also feel more relaxed knowing that your teeth are in good health. While going to the dentist can certainly be frightening, it should not be something you avoid. Remember that you are in charge of your teeth and there are many options to help you feel more comfortable during your entire visit.