It is normal to feel a little anxious when visiting the dentist, but for many people suffering from dental phobia this anxiety can be debilitating.
”Dental phobia” refers to the fear of dentistry and receiving of dental care; patients can feel extremely anxious and extremely fearful – even the thought of going to the dentist for something as simple as a check up can bring up these extreme feelings. Many people will put up with pain in the mouth and gum issues to avoid visiting the dentist, which can obviously be highly detrimental to your health.
People who do not visit the dentist regularly are at increased risk of developing gum disease. As high quality, caring and experienced dentists in Lancaster we are committed to patient wellbeing and care, so we have put together a guide for how to overcome dental anxiety.
1. Let Us Know
If you are a nervous patient, please let your dentist know. We will take the time to ensure that you feel comfortable and wholly at ease in our care. Your dentist will determine how to manage your fears and how to address them in the best possible way. If you know the reason why you feel nervous (although many people cannot pinpoint and exact cause) tell your dentist, they will be able to make the experience much better for you and you will feel more in control.
2. Relaxation Techniques
Try to calm yourself down by focussing on your breathing whilst in the waiting room or in the dentist’s chair. Take deep breaths; focus on drawing in and slowly releasing your breath. Some people find that listening to music helps to ease their anxieties and make them feel more relaxed; choose calm music and try to focus on the songs rather than your appointment.
3. Book a Morning Appointment
Anxiety can build up throughout the day and make you feel ill; some people find it very difficult to eat or drink whilst suffering from bouts of anxiety, which has a negative effect on your health and can increase anxiety levels. To avoid this book an appointment early in the morning, then you won’t have the chance to over-think your appointment.
4. Bring a Friend or Family Member
Many people find comfort in having a friend or a family member with them; even just sitting in the waiting room with somebody to talk to can make you feel much more relaxed. Talk about TV shows and things that you are passionate about to take your mind off the appointment that you are waiting for.
5. Visit Regularly
The more you visit the dentist, the better your oral health will be, and the more relaxed you will become about going to the dentist. The healthier your mouth the less likely you are to need any extensive dental treatments. You are more likely to get over your dental anxiety by visiting the dentist, rather than avoiding it.
Follow this advice and you should be able to overcome your dental anxiety. For further information about dental treatments and what we can do for you, please do not hesitate to get in contact with the team here at Bay Dental. To book an appointment, please give us a call on 01524 32639.