So many people fear going to the dentist that psychologists have difficulty quantifying it. People are afraid for many different reaso
ns. Some fears may stem from past experiences that were negative, some people just simply fear anything that may bring them pain and others just don’t like the unknown. Here are five ways to mentally prepare yourself for whatever that trip to the dentist may bring.
Understand that Being Fearful is Normal
It is estimated that anywhere from 9-15% of people avoid the dentist due to anxiety and fear. Although some people are generally more anxious than others, it is completely normal to be fearful of the unknown, especially a dental procedure that you’ve never had. It can ease the nerves a little just knowing that you’re not alone.
Find a Dentist You Trust
Make sure you go to a dentist that makes you feel comfortable and that cares about you as a person rather than just your teeth. There aren’t very many dentists that specialize in dealing with dental phobias, but dentists with certain personality types may make you feel more comfortable than others.
Know Your Procedure
If you are familiar with your dental procedure rather than being blindsided by what’s happening, that can ease anxiety or reduce fears. Make sure to ask your dentist or hygienist all of the details that you want to know in advance.
Try to Distract Yourself During the Procedure
Ask your dentist to play music or having a TV on (if available) can distract you from the procedure. If those options aren’t available, you can always try counting the ceiling tiles or other methods of distracting yourselves.
Try Relaxation Techniques
If you find yourself getting extremely anxious, you can try special breathing techniques or focusing on the sound of your breathing to ease your anxiety. If those don’t sound like something that would relax you, you can always find additional relaxation techniques online.
If you have any fears at all about coming to our office or your procedure, please call to talk with us!