Nobody ever looks forward to their appointment at the dentist. We all get a little bit apprehensive in the waiting room, even if it’s just for a routine check-up, and one in four people dread their next trip to the local practice. But for some people, dental anxiety can become a serious issue; too nervous and unable to face their fears, they simply avoid the dentist and never actually seek the treatments they require.
But why suffer in silence? Overcoming dental anxiety may be easier than you think and here are few helpful tips to get you started.
Address the problem
Rather than admitting your fear of the dentist, you may find any excuse not to go – claiming to be far too busy or blaming the lack of appointments available. In order to combat your anxiety, you need to stop denying it. Sit for a few minutes and think about what it is you’re afraid of. Is it the thought of potentially painful procedures? Perhaps the sounds and smells? Or just the dentisthim/herself? Determining exactly what it is that makes you anxious is a great first step to getting over your fear.
Distract your mind
In the hours leading up to your appointment, try to keep your mind occupied. You could watch the TV, read a book, or do a puzzle; anything that prevents you from thinking and ruminating about your fear. When it’s time to head to the practice, ask a relative or friend to come with you. Those few minutes sat in the waiting room can feel like an eternity if you start to panic, but having someone there to keep you companycan make all the difference. Conversation is a great way to distract your mind and before you know it, it’ll be your turn to go in.
Agree a signal
Communication can be difficult whilst in the dentist’s chair; you may worry that, once they start the procedure, you won’t be able to tell them if you’re in pain or need a break. Let the dentist know about your concerns and perhaps agree on a non-verbalsignal, such as a simple hand gesture or movement. If you start to feel anxious or in discomfort, use the signal and stop for a few minutes. You’ll feel much more in control of the situation and, therefore, hopefully less anxious.
Brush up on dentists
An unfriendly and inconsiderate dentist can often be the root cause of dental anxiety, instantly putting you on edge and adding to your fears. It’s therefore important to find a practice that is warm and welcoming; somewhere that understands your concerns and strives to make you feel relaxed and comfortable during your visit. You could ask friends and family for recommendations or, alternatively, search online for practices that specialise in dental anxiety.
Kiln Lane Dental demonstrates a wealth of experience when it comes to dealing with nervous patients, putting people at ease and making appointmentsrelaxing and hassle-free. Find out how they could help you to get over dental anxiety today by giving them a call!