Thousands of Americans suffer from poor oral health due to a serious fear of the dentist. Although it is not uncommon to be afraid of the dentist, it can be a serious issue that keeps people out of the dentist’s chair for months, and sometimes even years. Skipping dental visits is not okay and can result in serious tooth decay, gum decay, and other oral health issues that can get severely worse if undetected.
Dentists often strive to create a comfortable and calming environment for patients so that they don’t have to be anxious in the dentist’s chair. Here are some things you can ask your dentist about so that they can help make your visit a fear-free experience:
Setting the scene
Listening to soothing music, covering your eyes, and even lighting candles can help with your experience. Sometimes patients simply need a distraction from the sounds of the cleaning or procedure tools. Covering your ears and smelling something other than toothpaste can help you relax and make you forget that you are at the dentist.
Ask your dentist about sedation dentistry. Sedation dentistry relaxes you by using sedatives either orally, intravenously, or in other forms that will make you calm and sleepy. Different offices offer different sedation options. Talk to your dentist about the right option for you!
Ask for an explanation
As a patient with dental anxiety, you realize that some of your fears are a bit unreasonable. Ask your dentist to thoroughly explain procedures and give details as to why you need them. Understanding what your dentist is doing can give you peace of mind and help you relax.