If you’re afraid of going to the dentist, don’t worry. You’re far from the only person who has reservations about going in for a checkup; the number of people who forego their dental health because of fear and anxiety stems into the millions.
This is why doctors have gone to great lengths to help get patients in the door by offering them various options to relax. The use of anesthetics and sedatives is quite high in the dental field compared to others, but these statistics are reflected by the widespread perceptions held by the public.
Again, it is not only children who are the ones fearful of sitting in the dentist’s chair. Just be up-front and tell your dentist that you’re apprehensive about your upcoming appointment. It is their job to make your experience as comfortable and relaxing as possible. Here are some tips your dentist may share with you to help calm your nerves..
Relax, It’s Going to be OK
As previously mentioned, the first and most important thing you should do is ask your dentist about what you can expect during the procedure. Well-informed patients tend to be less anxious, as they have a better sense of control over the situation.
It can also help to bring a friend or family member along to your appointment, one who can comfort you and make you feel at ease. Simply having a familiar face can take away the nervous edge. Most dentists actually encourage their patients to have someone tag along for this reason.
Given that most anxiety is psychologically driven, it is not uncommon for many dentists to perform various distraction techniques; these are subtle ways of misdirecting the patient’s attention. Listening to music, watching TV, or listening to an audiobook during the appointment can subside your nervousness.
To avoid the anxiety-inducing effect of using needles to apply anesthetic, almost all dentists today use a device called a dental wand that injects the material into the gum in a far less discomforting way.
If all else fails or if a patient makes a specific request, sedation is the next option. It is available in oral or IV form, and is very effective at putting anxiety to rest. The level of sedation administered depends on the patient’s needs, and can range from mild to putting him or her completely under.
The staff at Sierra Dental are here to help make your visit the best it can be. Our team will do everything they can to keep you relaxed and satisfied. Feel free to tell us what we can do to improve your experience.