Dental Tips Blog

Aug
3

Fear of the Dentist: Normal…and Curable!

Some people with dental anxiety are willing to live with intense pain, chronic bad breath, and missing teeth rather than see a dentist…simply because they’re that afraid.

Also, there’s often a measure of shame. Some are hesitant to admit that they’re afraid of the dentist and come up with a million excuses to hide the fact; by the time they need to see someone, they’re often too embarrassed about their teeth to let a professional examine them.

Do you suffer from an unspoken fear of the dentist?

You’re Not Alone

Dental fear can range from mild anxiety to phobia. An estimated 9-15% of Americans (up to 40 million) avoid the dentist because of such fear. Understanding how common it is may assure you that it’s normal to be afraid of the dentist.

How to Cure Fear of the Dentist

Consult a mental health professional. This is a practical step to take if you suffer from a serious phobia. Cognitive behavioral therapy or sessions with a counselor can help you learn to look at dental care in a new light.

Try sedation. Medication can help you relax during treatment and forget all about it. When sedation helps you get through one appointment, you’ll feel more optimistic about future trips to the dentist.

Distract yourself during treatment. Close your eyes. Listen to music. Apply essential oil like lavender for soothing aromatherapy. Some dentists even have televisions mounted on the ceiling!

Concentrate on the benefits of treatment. What are your smile goals? How can having healthier teeth improve your health, career, and social life? Motivation to reach your goals can help you rise above a fear of dentistry.

Talk with your dentist. Get to know your dentist as person away from the dental chair. Take the opportunity to express your concerns and learn how they can help you feel more comfortable. Finding an understanding dentist is often the most effective way to conquer your fear.

Posted on behalf of:
Soft Touch Dentistry
1214 Paragon Dr
O’Fallon, IL 62269
(618) 622-5050

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