Do you know that one in three people feel some sense of anxiety or trepidation before a visit to the dentist and one in every ten people will avoid the dentist altogether even when they experience problems? If you can relate to any of the above and want to know how to get over dental anxiety, we’ve put together 5 great tips that just may help you to get the dental care you need.
One of the most important factors when overcoming dental anxiety is good communication between you and your dentist. Typically, when a patient feels informed throughout their visit, they feel more in control. When they feel more in control they are typically less anxious.
As a top tip, it’s a good idea to explain to your dental team that you suffer from dental anxiety. Our experienced team are trained to treat patients who have dental anxiety. We adopt safe and comfortable techniques and ensure that any dental procedures and care are less stressful including the use of IV sedation dentistry. So do please come and talk to us about how we can help.
As a general rule of thumb, patients who wholeheartedly trust their dentist are less likely to experience dental anxiety. So seek recommendations from family and friends or do some research online. There are many dentists out there who have an excellent and trusted reputation, you just need to find them.
As a suggestion, once you have a dentist in mind, consider speaking to them first. This way, you should get a gut feel about them. If the signs are good, then you can always start by booking a simple dental check-up and build up from there. It’s a good way to build a trusting relationship.
3. Numbing gels
Nearly one in 5 people have an innate fear of needles so you’re definitely not alone. If you do require an injection or IV sedation dentistry prior to treatment, then ask about numbing gels. These can be applied topically to enable a painless injection and have helped countless people overcome their fear of injections.
4. Techniques and control
When we’re faced with a situation like dental anxiety, it’s only natural that we tense up when in the dental chair. This makes us even more fearful. For this reason, it’s important to learn to relax and is a key part of understanding how to get over dental anxiety. A relaxed and calm person is less sensitive to pain. So try listening to calming or soothing music when travelling to your appointment, adopt deep breathing techniques and bring some comfortable headphones with you during your appointment. In addition, get your dentist to explain to you what they are going to do and how they plan to do it. This way, it puts you in better control of the situation. Don’t forget to ask about IV sedation dentistry and numbing gels if you plan to have any treatment done.
As a top tip, on the day of your dental appointment, look to ensure you don’t pack too much into your day. Leave yourself plenty of time to get to your appointment so that you remain as calm as possible and maybe reward yourself with an afternoon off if possible when you return.
5. Identify your fear
This may be hard without assistance but once you know exactly what the cause of your dental anxiety is, it becomes easier to start working towards a solution.
Typically, dental fear is triggered by a past experience that occurred during a previous dental visit. This might be due to a painful injection, the sound and feel of a dental drill or even being previously chastised because of bad teeth. Either way, you might be surprised at just how far modern dentistry has come. Nowadays, dentists and their teams are non-judgemental and far more attuned to patients with dental anxiety. Advances in technology also mean that a visit to the dentist is usually a comfortable experience with noise-reducing dental drills, painless injections and gentle dental techniques.
Hopefully, this has given you some tips on how to get over dental anxiety but the key factor is to first talk to your dentist.
Here at Beyond 32 Dental we warmly welcome anxious or nervous patients and will do everything we can to make you feel as relaxed as possible. We operate a modern dental practice with all the technology needed to make your visit a comfortable one. Call our Cherrybrook dentist today at (02) 9158 6334 and let us allay your fears.