Nobody looks forward to being in a dental chair for a dental procedure. But in some people, the anxiety and fear of the dentist are at the next level. There is a name for this fear, and that is dentophobia. Let’s explore more!
What is Dentophobia?
Dentophobia is a condition when your fear of the dentist is extreme, and you try to avoid your dental appointment anyhow. Dentophobia is also known as dental phobia and dental anxiety. It is essential to come out of dental phobia because it not only costs you tooth decay or tooth loss. If you get gum disease, it affects your other body parts as well.
If you are also scared of the dentist, read this article to learn about the ways to overcome your fear.
Identify the Reason for Your Fear of the Dentist
Identifying the core cause of your fear will help you significantly in overcoming dental anxiety. Check out the below list of most common reasons behind fear of the dentist and know why you shouldn’t worry about them:-
- Unfortunate Incident in the Past
Sometimes unfortunate incidents happen, like a dental procedure done with insufficient anaesthesia. Or the dentist didn’t make you feel comfortable. Although it happens rarely, if you were at the wrong place and at the wrong time, it’s almost impossible to forget it. Be assured that these incidents happen seldom, and there is no reason for that to get repeated.
- Nervousness & Claustrophobia
The dental chair makes you feel out of control and stuck. If you already have claustrophobia, it can worsen in such situations. And the fear of the unknown increases nervousness. Discuss these feelings with your dentist beforehand. Nowadays, dentists are concerned about dental anxiety patients. They keep blankets, eye masks, and headphones for patient’s relaxation.
- Environmental Effect
The cabin of a dentist has a certain aura of surgery. Your reason for dentophobia can be the plethora of tools and voices coming from the dental equipment. Dentists who care for anxiety patients maintain a friendly and pleasant environment inside their chamber. They can also provide you with eye masks to prevent you from seeing their equipment.
- Cautious About Your Dental Appearance
You are not alone if you feel uncomfortable in showing teeth to someone from so close. Many people are scared of the dentist because they feel embarrassed. But your oral health deteriorates further when you don’t visit the dentist. They are not there to judge you but to heal you. Thus approach them with self-assurance and trust.
- Fear of Pain
Fear of pain is one of the most common causes of extreme dental phobia. It can be your own experience or the stories you hear from others about their painful dental treatment. Modern dental techniques are much advanced. We can’t promise you a pain-free experience. But currently, dentists execute much less painful and less invasive dental procedures.
Proven Tips to Overcome Your Dental Phobia
You won half the battle by understanding the insignificance of the reasons for your dentophobia. Now try the following tips to get rid of your fear forever.
- Find the Right Dentist for Dental Anxiety
Since dentophobia is an increasing scenario in America, dentists are practising extensively to handle such cases. Find the right dentist who has friendly and caring staff. Look for good reviews and the availability of a relaxing and state-of-the-art clinic. You can also try sedation dentistry. It’s a harmless way of treating your dental issues with sedatives in limited and safe quantities.
It is also called twilight dentistry or memory-free treatment, as you are half awake and half asleep. Your brain can follow simple instructions, but you don’t feel the pain. Click here to know more. You can also search for “dentist for anxiety patients near me” on Google.
- Take a Friend or Family Member With You
Ask your friend or family member who understands your fear of the dentist to accompany you for the procedure. You can ask them to wait outside or to be with you during the procedure. But it is always better to have someone by your side as a support system.
- Ask for Breaks
If you are not comfortable completing the whole procedure in one go, ask your dentist how it can be done by taking short relaxing breaks in between.
- Be Straight-forward
Don’t hide your dentophobia from your dentist. And don’t tell them that you are ok if you are not. Honest communication about your fears will help your dentist in making you feel comfortable and safe.
- Use Distractions to Relax
As mentioned earlier, dentists who specialize in treating dental anxiety patients offer headphones. You can listen to your favorite music to calm your nerves. You can also practice meditation and breathing techniques to distract yourself.
We hope that the information shared in this article will help you understand and overcome your dentophobia. You will also get support from your dentist to go through your treatment. Contact Dr. Hong for memory-free and stress-free dental treatment at Joshua Hong DDS.