If you’re someone who struggles with dental fear and anxiety, it’s important to know that you’re not alone. Dental anxiety is actually very common, even among adults.
While some may get anxious about going to the dentist because they anticipate pain, others may avoid the dentist out of embarrassment about the appearance of their teeth or mouth odor. Whatever the reason, the longer you delay going to the dentist, the more likely you are to develop dental problems, so we recommend you schedule an appointment soon and use these tools to help you in overcoming dental anxiety.
1. Share Your Concerns
Most dentists are aware of how common dental anxiety is and will be happy to help you in any way they can. Before your appointment, speak up about your fears so your dentist and hygienist can accommodate your needs and also answer any questions you may have.
2. Bring Music
For many people with dental anxiety, the sounds of the drills and other tools used during their procedure can cause discomfort and fear. Try bringing headphones and some of your favorite music to your appointment to distract you. If music isn’t your style, try an audiobook.
3. Agree on a Signal
Talk to your dentist and hygienist before starting your procedure and agree on a hand signal for when you feel uncomfortable. That way, if something is too much for you, you have an easy way to let them know that you need a break.
4. Focus on Breathing
When you’re nervous, you’re more likely to hold your breath, but taking slow, deep breaths can actually help to calm your nerves and lower your stress levels. Focus on your breath, counting up on your inhale, and down on your exhale. If you’re familiar with meditation, try a body scan. If you’re not, try imagining yourself in a relaxing place like the beach.
As many as 40 million Americans avoid the dentist because of fear and anxiety, but with the right tools and a caring dentist, you can overcome dental anxiety. Our team at Hawkins Family Dental cares not only about your dental health, but your emotional health too. If you have any concerns about your appointment, please let us know so we can make sure that you are as comfortable and calm as possible.Leave a reply →