As many as 15 percent of people claim they avoid the dentist because of anxiety or fear, but this can definitely affect your oral health. If a racing heart, rattled nerves, and fear accompany you to your dental appointments, there may be a few things you can do to help yourself feel more at ease when you visit a Mountain View, CA dentist.
Open Up to Your Dentist About the Problem
If you have dental anxiety, one of the worst things you can do is keep quiet about what you’re feeling. It is always best to inform the dentist that you struggle with dental anxiety. By knowing this, your dentist can:
- Take more time to explain what they are doing
- Take steps to help you relax
- Establish a hand signal with you so they know if you are getting extremely uncomfortable
Sometimes, anxiety can stem from something as simple as seeing or hearing what is taking place around you. Even this is something the dentist can help you solve by providing shielded glasses or allowing you to listen to music with your earphones.
Practice Relaxation Methods During Treatment
Learning how to mindfully relax during dental treatments can sometimes help thwart anxiety and induce a sense of calm so you can get through the treatment. Techniques like focused breathing, alternate thoughts, and patterned muscle tensing can help take your mind off of what is taking place. Harvard Health offers a nice list of relaxation techniques you could use while in the dentist’s chair.
Consider Sedation Dentistry If Anxiety Is Too Severe
If you have anxiety so severe when getting dental treatment that it could cause you to go into panic mode and little will relieve your symptoms, you may want to consider sedation dentistry. Sedation dentistry can be done with medications given before treatments to help you relax, and the sedation can range from mild with oral medications or nitrous oxide gas to moderate with IV anesthesia.
Even though dental treatment can be scary, it is a necessary part of your overall health. Reach out to us at Cassara Dental if you have dental treatment phobias you would like to discuss.