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I’m Afraid of the Dentist: What Do I Do?

02/22/2017
dental-anxiety

Dental treatments are necessary to maintain oral health. But, if you’re someone with a severe fear of your dentist, how would you handle scheduling that bi-annual appointment? Read about how Cabrillo Family Dentistry offers sedation dentistry treatments to help people who suffer from dental anxiety.

What Is Dental Anxiety?

Dental anxiety is a strong fear of visiting the dentist. It could result from many different things including a previous bad experience with a dental professional or an anxiety about the possible pain associated with dental procedures. Because visiting the dentist every six months is so crucial, dental medicine has advanced to help the people suffering from dental anxiety. Here’s how to deal with dental anxiety.

Dental Anxiety Treatment Options

Keeping your mind occupied

If you distract yourself from the dental procedure, you may be able to keep your mind off of any pain or discomfort. Many patients are allowed to listen to music during their appointment. Often, some kids bring their favorite stuffed animal to cuddle with.

Pain medication

Often, pain is the main reason for people’s anxiety of the dentist. If you are sensitive to pain during dental treatment, consider asking your dental specialist about pain treatment options like various methods of anesthesia, nitrous oxide (laughing gas), or intravenous sedation.

Relaxation exercises

If you’re scared of the dentist but need treatment, try relaxation methods before and during your procedure. When you’re nervous or upset, stress chemicals in your body cause you to react in certain ways. People tense their muscles or breathe heavily when they’re stressed, and this can lead to more sensitivity to pain.

During your visit to the dentist, try these relaxation techniques to reduce your pain and anxiety:

  • Guided imagery: listen to someone’s relaxing voice help you imagine a peaceful setting like a beach
  • Deep breathing: breathe slowly and deeply, often using counting to help regulate your breathing
  • Progressive relaxation: focus on each muscle group one at a time and work to relax them as you go from your toes to your head

Sedation Dentistry at Cabrillo Family Dental Care

At Cabrillo Family Dental Care, we offer sedation dentistry services for our patients who need a little help relaxing during procedures. Talk to your dentist about your fears, and he or she can find the best relaxation method to work with your treatment.