Typically, trips to a dentist’s office are not considered a favorite past time – mostly as a result of dental anxiety. In fact, 50% of adults skipped going to the dentist in 2009, according a study by the U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
What is Dental Anxiety?
Some people have a true phobia of going to the dentist, so much so that they even lose sleep at night, excessively worrying about what might happened in that dentist’s chair. Dental anxiety is not uncommon – 15% of Americans stay away from the dentist due to fear. According to dental experts, dental anxiety is significantly more common in older people who have encountered trauma during a dentist visit. This is largely because dental technology was not as advanced back then than it is today. General consensus holds that the most effective way overcome your fear is to face it. Our dental experts at Signature Smile General and Cosmetic Dentistry share a few tips that may help you.
How To Overcome Dental Anxiety
Communicate with your dentist openly
It is advised to speak to your dentist about your dental anxiety. Ask your dentist to explain the procedure in detail with you so you know what to expect, the different dental instruments that will be used and the duration of the procedure.
Convey Messages With Your Hands
The inability to speak while your dentist is working on your teeth can create panic for people who suffer from dental anxiety. If you feel any pain or sensation during a dental procedure, raise your hand. This will enable your dentist to make any adjustments so that you are more comfortable.
Look for Distractions
In some dentists’ office, patients are given video glasses so that they are distracted by a movie during their procedure. If this is not available at your dentist, listening to music or simply letting your mind wander away may help.
For dental procedures that require anesthesia, keep in mind that anesthesia nowadays is much more effective than what it used to be. Sedatives or nitrous oxide may also help.
Ask for a break
If you feel an onset of claustrophobia, or when anxiety builds ups, taking a break may help calm you down. Simply ask for a break.
Inquire about sedation dentistry
In specific areas of dentistry, there are some dentists who practice dentistry. This means that you receive dental care under full or partial loss of consciousness.
It is human nature to be afraid of the unknown which is why we feel the need to re-iterate addressing and concerns your may have about your experience ahead of time. Dental anxiety can be overcome.
Dr. Evelina Tolchinsky, DDS and Dr. Trogan, DDS at Signature Smile General and Cosmetic Dentistry will go out of their way make your next dentist visit as anxiety free as possible. Our dentists have served the residents of Brooklyn Heights, Fort Greene, Carroll Gardens, Cobble Hill, Dumbo, and all of our other surrounding communities for years.
Our offices are located in the heart of beautiful Brooklyn Heights at 100 Pineapple Walk, Brooklyn, NY 11201