Are you one of the millions of people who are afraid of going to the dentist?
If so, you’re not alone.
As much as 8% of all people suffer some degree of dentophobia (fear of the dentist) and avoid dental appointments at all cost as a result.
As many as 20% visit the dentist only when absolutely necessary.
If that sounds like you, we hope you’re aware of how important your oral health is! Regular checkups can save you a lot of pain and suffering later in life.
So if you’re ready to overcome fear of the dentist, we’re here to help.
What is Dentophobia?
Though dentophobia simply means “fear of the dentist”, there are different ways this fear can manifest itself.
For example, some dentophobes are frightened by the thought of pain due to a lack of appropriate anesthesia. Others simply don’t like that feeling of helplessness that sometimes comes from being in the dentist chair.
Ask yourself what it is about the dentist that frightens you. Understanding your fear can help you figure out the best way to conquer it.
Pick a Great Dentist
Though it might be a tall order, finding a dentist you trust may be all you need to overcome your fear.
Since many people suffer some level of dentophobia, dentists treat anxious patients regularly. You should talk to the dentists you’re considering about your concerns and provide them the opportunity to put them to rest.
The right dentist for you will be the one who best puts your mind at ease.
Once you have found a dentist you like and you’re facing your fear by settling in for an appointment, try listening to music or an audio book while the hygienist or dentist work. Distracting your mind this way can help allay your fears. Raleigh dentists Matt Wassel and Mark Wainright have recently renovated their office to make it more friendly and appealing to all patients. They even made the color scheme a lighter grey which is more pleasing to the eye. The overall look and feel of a dentist’s office can change the way you feel about the process.
Many people with dentophobia choose dentists that offer sedation dentistry. With sedation, you may not feel anything at all so any fear of pain you have should be diminished.
At Mile High Smiles, we strive to be extra gentle and caring, and we also offer oral sedation as well as nitrous oxide.
See A Psychologist
If your dentophobia is so bad that you don’t think you’ll be able to take any of the advice above, consider making an appointment with a psychiatrist. Some even specialize in conquering irrational fears.