Scared of the dentist? You shouldn’t be…
Oral hygiene is an important aspect of your overall well-being. Fear of going to the dentist or of the dentist will hinder you from getting optimum dental health.
Let’s see what you can do to at least minimize that fear. Before doing so, tell me what you’re scared of.
Root Causes of Dental Fear
The Sharp Tools
Alright, I get it. I, too, was scared of needles but they are not as bad as we think. The prick of the needle may jolt you at first but after a few seconds, you’ll realise that it wasn’t even painful, to begin with.
If you are thinking of sharp and pointed dental instruments, they shouldn’t scare you as well. They are designed especially for oral care needs. Dentists also underwent extensive studies and training in using these tools so you can be sure that you are in good hands.
So, what makes you feel embarrassed?
If you are thinking about how others will tease you after getting your braces, don’t be. There is a reason why dentists recommend these dental treatments. Trust me, it is for your own good.
When the embarrassment is rooted in the condition of your teeth, gums and other mouth structures, it is more reason to visit the dentist. They can provide preventive and corrective treatments to help your teeth and gums become healthy once again.
Not So Good Experience
There is no arguing that a negative experience can impact your trust in dentists. I understand how menacing it can be to lie down on the chair, the dentist hovering over you and feeling helpless despite the pain you were going through. But that’s water under the bridge now.
You must also remember that not all dentists are the same. Many dentists offer an open communication policy so you can tell them what you feel and what you want to happen. All you need to do is to give it another try.
This can be a little tricky as the fear is not truly directed to the dentist or dental visits. It is rooted in fear of the unknown. Many patients tend to overthink the situation they are about to face, hence, resulting in anxiety attacks.
Just the thought of “what will happen if…” or expecting that something bad will happen can cause the feeling of nervousness. The thing is, you should prevent yourself from doing this. Try to deviate from negative thoughts. Think about what good dental visits can do to your oral hygiene.
ALT TEXT: Root Causes of Dental Fears
7 Ways to Overcome Dental Fears
Now that we know what scares you about dental visits, let’s look into some tips and tricks that can help alleviate those fears.
Acknowledge Your Fears
The best way to deal with your fears is to recognise them. Just like any other problem, you may need to come face to face with your fears to eliminate them. You can write them down in a notebook and find someone to discuss them with.
2. Talk to Someone
After acknowledging the reason why you’re scared, you can find someone and talk about it. Let’s say, a close friend, a family member, a psychologist or perhaps a dentist. Choose someone you can be comfortable with or someone whom you feel can understand you.
3. Reduce Your Fears
Now that you’ve shared your fear with someone you trust, it is time to find ways to reduce your fears. You can practice some relaxation techniques like breathing exercises before going to the dentist and before the treatment. Breathing exercises help promote relaxation and calm anxiety and stress. If you want to know the different types of breathing exercises and how it can help you in so many ways, you can learn more at breathwrk.com.
You can also find some distractions while sitting on the dental chair like appreciating the design on the ceiling. Perhaps you can hum a song that can keep your mind off the treatment. You can also bring a fidget toy that can keep your hand and mind busy during the procedure.
4. Find the Right Dentist
Find a dental care provider that you can be at ease with. Look up some listings and recommendations from the people you trust. You may also check on the reviews on dental websites to give you an idea of how they’ve treated their patients.
Once you’ve got a list of clinics, start calling them and observe the tone of voice of the persons you are talking to. Chances are friendly patient coordinators have proper orientation from the dentists.
After narrowing down your list to about 2 or 3, you may visit them to check on the ambience of their clinic and how accommodating the dentist or staff can be. If you feel comfortable with the environment, book your dental appointment.
ALT TEXT: Find the Right Dentist to Overcome Your Fears
Visit the Dentist with a Friend
During your scheduled dental visit, bring a friend or a family member so you can feel more secure. Choose someone who can empathise with your fears and cheer you up after the treatment.
2. Ask Your Dentist About Sedatives
Sleep dentistry is available in some dental clinics. It works by giving a dose of sedatives to patients with anxiety problems. This allows the patient to gently sleep during the treatment. If you feel that your fears will get in the way of the treatment, you may ask your dentist for sedation but this requires consultation with an anaesthetist.
3. Reward Yourself
Lastly, after a successful trip to the dentist, reward yourself. Tell yourself you did a good job today. Although getting oral care is a reward in itself, it helps to spend a few more to give yourself a bonus like eating that strawberry shortcake you’ve been craving for.
Are you still scared of the dentists? Don’t be…
Over the years dental technology has undergone many innovations that will keep your mind at ease. All you need to do is to choose the right dentist near you.
Contact Smile Ville in South Morang for a comfortable and safe dental treatment!