Dental anxiety is a common fear among adults. Your dentist understands your fear and has made efforts to help you overcome it. Read the tips below if you struggle with dental anxiety.
Discuss your fears with your dentist
A fear of dentists is common and may prevent you from seeking dental treatments. It is normal to feel anxiety when going to the dentist; in fact, some patients become so anxious that they experience panic attack-like symptoms. If you experience these extreme feelings, talk to your dentist about it. Your dentist will listen to your concerns, answer your questions and address your fears to help you feel more comfortable during treatments. Discussing your fear with the staff may give you a sense of relief. Many patients feel relaxed during their visit when they know that the staff understands their dental fears. This communication may even lead to additional options to make your treatment more comfortable such as listening to your favorite music or wearing sunglasses to block out your view from the dental chair.
Once you’ve built trust with your dentist and are feeling more relaxed about your upcoming visit, you may want to schedule your next appointment. Having a regular check-up every six months will help keep your teeth healthy and prevent tooth loss. It’s also the perfect opportunity to discuss any oral health concerns you may have.
Agree on a signal with your dentist
When you sit in the waiting room or before the procedure begins, talk to your dentist about your fear. They may suggest a signal for you to use when you really need them to stop a procedure. It can be a hand gesture, raising your hand to indicate you need a break, or tapping your feet and asking for a stop to the procedure.
Take a family member or friend with you for emotional support
Having someone you trust in the dental chair can be comforting for you and the person you bring along with you. This individual can also offer you an additional pair of eyes and ears during the procedure as well as read out loud to you in case you feel too nervous about speaking. If you’ve known this person for a long time, they may have a better understanding of your anxiety than your dentist will. This person can also help distract you if you start feeling anxious by talking to you, helping you to stay calm and relaxed.
Bring distractions to occupy your mind during procedures
Distractions occupy your mind during the procedure and make it less painful and scary. Your dentist can recommend some activities that you can do while you’re in the chair, such as listening to music or reading a book.
Consider sedation dentistry
If you are extremely anxious about visiting your dentist, consider sedation dentistry to ease your anxiety. Sedation dentistry relaxes patients using medication before treatments. With this type of treatment, you will feel calmer and more comfortable throughout your appointment. Your dentist can discuss which type of sedation is right for you. Discuss your options today!
For the best dental treatment options near you, visit Denali Dental Care at 625 E. 34th Ave. #200, Anchorage, AK 99503, or call (907) 274-7691 to book an appointment.