How to Cope with Dental Anxiety

August 22, 2019
Communicating with your dentist

Clear communication is always important.

Here at Cramer Dentistry, we know that very few people enjoy coming to the dentist. Beyond general anxiety though is often a deep rooted fear. Often this stems from one or several bad experiences that occurred in a patient’s past. We absolutely understand how these experiences can put a stain on dentistry as a whole for many. We are always here to help anyone who is ready to cope with their anxiety. If you suffer from dental anxiety, or “hate going to the dentist” we do not take it personally! We work very hard to make all of our patients as comfortable as possible.

Clear Communication
The best thing you can do to help us accommodate your needs, is to be open and honest. When you call our office, give our front office staff a heads up. If it would help you, before committing to an appointment, we can always give you a tour of the office, let you meet our staff and give us a chance to understand your concerns before your sitting in the chair. Once you are acquainted with our office, if during any appointment you are uncomfortable always let us know. Knowing what you’re experiencing and how you’re feeling, helps us do our job better and treat your individual needs. If there was a particular bad experience, or a certain aspect of dentistry your nervous about, let the hygienist and dentist know.

Comforts and Sedation
We offer blankets, and a wide selection of movies for you to watch during your treatment appointments. We also offer different levels of sedation. Most people are familiar with “laughing gas” or nitrous oxide. This is the lowest form of sedation we offer. The perk of nitrous is that it is out of your system by the time you leave the office. That means that you can drive yourself to and from your appointment, making scheduling easier. In most cases, nitrous helps you to feel more relaxed, and care less about the procedure. We always start with a low level to determine your tolerance and can always adjust the nitrous oxide as needed. We also offer non-IV and IV sedation for the extremely fearful. For either of these options you will need a driver both to and from your appointments. If you have any questions or concerns regarding these amenities we will address them at your initial visit.

Nitrous Oxide helps calm nerves before a procedure.

Nitrous Oxide is a great option for anyone feeling nervous about treatment.

Stay Distracted
Many people find that having some source of distraction is helpful. This is why we offer movies with headphones, but you are also welcome to bring something of your own. Whether you want to get lost in an audiobook or podcast or want to listen to relaxing music, we encourage you to bring any form of listening material that will help you. Another thing to remember, is to try and focus on your breathing. This is easier said than done, but if you find yourself getting nervous in the chair bringing your focus to your breath can ease tension and redirect your attention.

At the end of the day, we understand that most of the patients who walk through our door are not excited to be here. We also believe that your fears and concerns are always valid. We will work with you to sort out what may be causing your anxiety and strive to provide multiple options to make your appointments easier to endure. We simply ask that you be open with us so that we are able to best serve your individual needs. If you are not yet a patient of ours, and would like to talk with us about your fears and how we can help you, please give us a call!

 

 

 

 

References

Colgate

https://www.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/basics/dental-visits/what-is-dental-anxiety-and-phobia

ADA

https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/a/anxiety

Dental Research Journal

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4432608/

 


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