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How To Manage Your Anxiety About Dental Visits

Many of us have phobias that are centered around or become triggered by a visit to the dentist office. But while the reasons behind dental anxiety can be many, there is one thing they all have in common and that’s a pervading influence on the regularity with which these individuals see their dentist.

Or better yet, avoid going entirely until they have no other recourse due to an urgent matter that needs immediate attention. This can bring with it extreme pain and discomfort that could have been mostly avoided with some measure of preventive care during a routine check-up. These phobias of seeing a dentist become self-fulfilling prophecies where the very thing that is bringing about such fears are experienced in full force.

For most folks, the main cause behind phobias of dental visits is the pain. None of us like to feel sharp discomfort and pain and these are both closely associated with a visit to the dentist because our mouths are very sensitive regions of the body.

When someone is poking and prodding around near the teeth and gums it can be quite uncomfortable or downright agonizing if there is a serious matter that needs to be addressed. That fear of pain can then be compounded by a fear of needles or injections which are inserted directly into the mouth. Again, not a place where we want needles and for those who are already scared of needles being used on any area of the body this can be absolutely horrifying.

Some patients fear going to a dentist service in hayesville or because they are afraid of the numb feeling in their mouth from local anesthesia or so-called laughing gas. The side-effects can also include nausea and dizziness, neither of which are much fun to experience while you’re at the dentist or after you leave.

Managing Your Fears

So what’s the solution? It certainly isn’t possible (or even smart) to steer clear of the dentist’s office if you want to maintain good dental health. Luckily, there are some effective methods for working through your anxieties so you can have a stress-free visit with your dentist…or at the very least, less frightening.

Discuss Your Concerns

Conquering your fear of the dentist chair begins with effective communication about more than just dental hygiene tips. Talk to your dental professional about your anxiety and the two of you can find ways to reduce those fears so you can have a more productive and less worrisome time in the dentist’s chair.

If your dentist won’t take the time to talk to you about these concerns or dismisses them outright, then you should find a new dentist immediately.

That communication also extends to developing some sort of signaling system so you can alert the dentist that you are uncomfortable or you would like to take a break from the work being performed. A good dentist will also explain each step of the work they are about to perform, whether it’s something as simple as having you rinse or something a little more impactful like the use of a drill.

When the dentist gives you fair warning of what’s to come and explains the specifics of the procedure, that can make you more mentally prepared for that part of the process.

Useful Distractions

Many dentists have equipped their offices with sound and video systems that can help take your mind off what’s happening so you aren’t as focused or fearful of the work that the dentist needs to perform. Listening to music or watching a movie while you’re in the chair can be very effective at alleviating the fears that come with seeing the dentist.

Remember to Breathe

One of the biggest contributors to stress and mental anguish during a dentist visit (or any high anxiety situation) is a lack of proper breathing. When we become afraid or nervous, we forget to breathe and that can elevate the anxiety because oxygen isn’t getting into the lungs.

But if you remember to breathe slow and normal, you can give yourself the proper amount of oxygen and that can lower your feelings of stress.

Read Up on Reviews

These days just about every business has some form of online component, whether it’s a website, a social media account, and so on. Those venues typically have user reviews which you can read and analyze. While online reviews shouldn’t be your only determinant of the value or reputation of a business, you can quell some fears by seeing what others have to say about the dentist you plan to visit.

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