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Talking to Your Dentist About Dental Anxiety
Dental anxiety is a common issue among patients of all ages, and it is important to discuss any concerns you may have with your dentist. By doing so, your dentist can better understand your anxiety and make the necessary accommodations to ensure you feel as comfortable as possible while at the dentist.
An overview of dental anxiety
Dental anxiety does not have to hold you back from getting the oral care treatment you need, and you can overcome your anxiety to a large degree by discussing the cause of the stress with a dentist. The following is everything to know about dental anxiety, including what dental anxiety is and why it is important to talk to your dentist about it.
What is dental anxiety?
Dental anxiety is any fear, stress or concern related to being at a dental office. It is a fairly wide definition, and there are many different root causes of dental anxiety. The anxiety may stem from a fear of not knowing what to expect, pain caused by sharp instruments or previous bad experience. Many others are afraid of the sounds of a drill or other dental instrument or may simply feel embarrassed if they know they have an oral health concern that needs to be addressed.
When to talk to your dentist
It is encouraged to talk to your dentist any time dental anxiety is present, regardless of the severity of the condition. It may be as simple as stating you are afraid the procedure will be painful to requesting for certain accommodations to be made. The important thing is to not hide the anxiety or be ashamed of it. The best way to overcome the issue is to discuss it and face it head-on, which starts with discussing any concerns with the dentist.
Treatment for dental anxiety
The treatment for dental anxiety depends on the cause. If the issue is the experience of pain, then the dentist may use a form of sedation, such as laughing gas, to keep the patient calm and comfortable. If the issue has to do with a lack of knowing what to expect, she or he may explain each step of the treatment process in-depth. Regardless of the severity or cause of dental anxiety, there is always a solution.
How to stay calm before a dental visit
Unfortunately, many patients with severe anxiety avoid treatment altogether. However, there are certain things that can be done to minimize anxiety before a dental visit. Patients should give themselves plenty of time to prepare mentally by scheduling appointments a week or more ahead of time. It may also help to learn more about the dentist and the services offered before the visit.
Talk to a dentist about dental anxiety today
If you struggle with dental anxiety, understand that you are not alone. Here at our dental office, we have a friendly staff that is willing and able to answer all of your questions and concerns and make the necessary accommodations to help you feel more comfortable. Feel free to reach out to us today to learn more.
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