It has been reported that around 20%- 25% of people are scared of going to the dentist. And 1 in 10 people don’t go altogether due to this fear. There are many reasons for this phobia, and a lot of ways to reduce this anxiety. In this article we will take a look at the reason patients are scared to go to the dentists, and suggest methods of becoming more comfortable at your next check-up.
Many patients fear going to the dentist due to bad past experiences, whether this being a result of unexpected pain, a bad dentist, or a painful surgery. These experiences often are found in childhood, so coming to the dentist when you are older may be a completely different experience, as you are prepared and understand what is happening around you much more.
Association with toothache
Many people find that their fear is actually rooted in the pain they feel before going to the dentist, such as severe tooth ache. This pain can be so prominent that you may remember having tooth ache and immediately associate it with the dentist. This of course, is the complete opposite of the truth. Dentists are here to fix problems like tooth ache, even if it does hurt to get it fixed, its more than worth it compared to living with toothache.
The tools that a dentist uses are less than friendly looking. Sharp blades, needles and drills are never something you want in your mouth, but it is worth noting that efforts are being continuously made to make their equipment less intimidating, and patient friendly. Drills are being made quieter and sedatives are becoming more effective so the pain is minimalized.
Tips to ease your fear
If you are feeling anxious about returning to the dentist, try some of these tips to help calm you down and hopefully feel more at ease in the dentist’s office.
- Find an understanding dentist who can reassure you.
- Become accustomed to your environment. Meet your dentist beforehand and inform them of your anxieties.
- Choose an early appointment so you don’t have to think about it all day
- Talk to your dentist about numbing gel if you have a fear of needles.
- Try using headphones during your visit to calm you down
- Start gradually with a scrape and polish and build your way up to treatment like fillings.
If you are suffering from severe anxiety about going to the dentist, you can always ask to be referred to a dentist who offers sedation. These are specifically designed for nervous patients. You will receive a form of sedation, either by tablet, gas and air or injection, so you are much more relaxed during your appointment.
Are you suffering from anxiety concerning the dentist? Why not get in contact with Ascent Dental Care Solihull who are expert Solihull dentists to see how we can help you!