6 Ways to Deal with Dental Anxiety
If you have a fear of visiting the dentist, you're not alone. As many as 40% of the UK population have a known fear of the dentist with as many as 20% only going if they have dental pain.
Of course, regular dental visits are important to prevent problems later on down the line so we have put together 6 ways to help make your visits to the dentist more bearable.
1. Know You're Not alone
40% of people in the UK are worried when they go to the dentist, whether they feel the dental team might judge them, they expect pain and discomfort or they just feel uncomfortable.
No matter when you last saw a dentist your dental team will make every effort to make sure you feel welcome and comfortable.
We always enjoy seeing patients who havent seen a dentist for some years, as we get to reintroduce them to a positive dental experience and put them on the pathway to a great smile.
2. Don't Hide Your Fears
We help a lot of nervous patients within the practice, but we can't help if we don't know.
Let your dentist know ahead of time about your anxieties, and they can go over any specific concerns when they meet you. Not only does it allow the dentist to help tailor there care to you, but we can also prevent any particular discomfort from making the trip unpleasant.
Masking any anxieties often just leads to further anxiety making the whole experience more unpleasant without the dentist actually being able to help.
3. The First Appointment Is Nothing To Fear
The first appointment with a new practice should always be a checkup.
A Dentist would never want to just jump into complicated or major treatments on a first appointment. The first appointment lets us get to know you and your mouth, and come up with a treatment plan that suits you.
The main thing is that you get to know your dentist and begin to build up trust for your next visit.
4. Choose The Best Time Of Day
Making an appointment that works for you can help reduce the overall anxiety in the day of a dentist visit.
Getting seen for an appointment first thing in the morning can get it "out of the way" for the remainder of the day leaving you to relax and preventing anxiety from getting in the way of your day to day tasks.
Perhaps, however, an appointment at the end of the day is best for you. No work commitments to go back to, and a chance to relax afterwards.
Similarly, if you can make an appointment as soon as possible then do so. This prevents the dentist "looming" in the distance and stops too much anxiety.
Just consider what would work for you and try to make an appointment accordingly.
5. What Helps You Relax?
Sometimes simply changes to your environment can help you relax. Perhaps just some relaxing music playing, or a favourite calming fragrance?
Discuss what changes might make your experience better with your dentist.
6. Choose A Dentist You Trust
In a world of online reviews, testimonials and social media you should be able to get a feel for your new dentist before you even set foot in the door.
See what they offer in the way of anxious patient treatment. Perhaps you need sedation? Have they received awards or reviews? Even just give the practice a call to find out more.
Never just settle for the closest practise, when you think you could benefit from more specialised care. Most of all, find a caring, relaxed and friendly team of dentists that can help to get you smiling again.