For many people, going to the dentist can be stressful situation that creates a lot of anxiety. This anxiety can interfere with your dental health by preventing you from going to the dentist for important checkups, cleanings and procedures.
If you’re experiencing “dental anxiety,” you’re not alone. Dental anxiety and phobias are common, especially for people who have had a bad dental experience. Whether you’re worried about the dentist’s experience, the pain numbing agent, or the actual dental procedures, there are effective ways to combat your anxiety. Here are some tips:
Find a Good Dentist
Do some online research and ask friends and family for referrals. Finding a dentist that you feel comfortable with is important. Look for a dentist with good referrals, dental experience, a clean, sanitary office, and reasonable dental costs. Finding a reputable dental office, like Park Slope Dental, will help to reduce your dental fears and phobias.
Communicate Your Fears
When you find the right dentist, let him/her know about your dental anxiety. Your dentist will be able to better communicate with you throughout the procedure, so you know exactly what’s happening and what to expect. This will help to put you at ease.
Allow Extra Time
Allow extra time for your dental appointment, so you don’t have to rush. Don’t schedule an appointment if you’re stressed about being late to work or another appointment. Schedule your appointment at a time when you’re free from other obligations, so you can focus on relaxing.
Focus on Deep Breathing
If you’re having a procedure like a deep cleaning, root canal or tooth extraction that’s more stressful for you, focus on your breathing during the procedure to stay calm. Remember, you can always ask your dentist to stop for a moment if you start to feel faint, nauseous, or extremely anxious.
If you’re headed to the dentist, avoid too much caffeine before you go. Caffeine is a stimulant that raises your heart rate, blood pressure and energy level. If you’re already anxious about going to the dentist, drinking too much caffeine before your appointment will only create more anxiety.
Consider Sedation Dentistry
Sedation dentistry makes dental visits much easier for people who struggle with severe dental anxiety. It’s a painless process of administering sedating medications that allow the patient to feel more relaxed. There are many sedation options available depending on your level of anxiety and the type of dental procedure you are having done.