Do you feel relatively calm before your dental appointment or are you a little nervous about it? Do you worry about it long before the appointment? Are you someone who is terrified about dental treatment and worries about them all the time?
Do even those things that are supposed to make visits more comfortable just seem to increase the apprehension or feeling of anxiety and being out of control — like anti-anxiety medication, nitrous oxide (laughing gas) or local anesthesia — numbing the treatment area (injections, needles, shots)?
If you do have any of these symptoms, you are far from alone. A study called Dental fear in Australia: who’s afraid of the dentist? Reports that the percentage of high dental fear in Australia stands at 16.1 per cent. A higher percentage of females than males reported high fear (HF). Adults aged 40-64 years old had the highest prevalence of high dental fear with those adults aged 80+ years old having the least. The numbers differ, but the point is that regardless of race, sex, or economic circumstance, a certain percentage of ALL of us have dental fright.
But serious anxiety prevents many patients from seeking proper preventative care. The consequences of this problem may go far beyond dental pain or lost teeth. Gum disease is a serious infection that can affect other parts of the body. Studies now link it to illnesses including heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
So, it is very important to understand and fight dental anxiety, which is why Glenroy Dental has compiled the following information to help you understand and deal with dental anxiety.
Causes of Dental Anxiety
Dental phobia is a common issue, and many people will root their dental anxiety in a bad early experience. For many, their fear of the dentist started when they were children and persisted into adulthood. However, a bad experience is not the only reason for dental phobia. Sometimes, dental phobia is just the symptom of other issues including PTSD or fear of losing control.
Sometimes the sound of the tools, or simply the fear of local anesthetic lead to anxiety. Those elements can make some feel some extreme worry. The scientific names for this anxiety are dentophobia or odontophobia and you don’t need to have any particular dental trauma in your past to experience it.
What you do need to have, is the will to overcome your anxiety, to ensure you best dental health.
Approaches to Dental Anxiety
For people with dental anxiety, the following strategies can help calm your fears:
- Communicate with your dentist. The best tactic for overcoming dental fear is to talk to your dentist! Remember that your dentist is also a patient sometimes, and has seen many, many anxious patients!
- “Talk” with your hands. It can be difficult to speak when you have a mouth full of dental tools, so talk with your dentist before your procedure about how you will communicate should you have any discomfort or pain.
- Get distracted. Listening to music, listening to the radio, just letting your mind wander, or chatting with dental staff can help ease some of your anxiety. The dental chair is one of the few places that being distracted can be a bonus!
- Consider medication. If you are having a dental procedure that requires anesthesia, rest assured that anesthesia is much more effective today than it was in the past. For some patients, a sedative or nitrous oxide can also help calm their nerves.
- Take a break if you need it. If you feel like you need a break, let your dentist know.
- Ask about sedation dentistry. In sedation dentistry you are placed under partial or full loss of consciousness.
Why Choose The Glenroy Dental Group to Help With your Anxiety
- Our focus is patient care
- Hospital grade sterilisation
- Friendly and approachable team
- Child friendly, relaxing environment
- Patient comfort, safety and satisfaction are our prime goals
- We provide customised care tailored to your individual needs
- Integrity, high standards, superior quality materials and concern for the patient
But mainly, choose us because we care, and we will work together with you to understand and overcome your anxiety.
Your Dental Future with The Glenroy Dental Group
At The Glenroy Dental Group, your overall health and happiness are our ultimate dental goals. We use the most modern technology available and employ the latest dental techniques to ensure that your dental health and appearance are at the highest level. We want you to receive the best possible dental care with no pain or anxiety!
Our offices are conveniently located in the Pascoe Vale Road shopping strip, Glenroy, with ample parking space, we are located within easy walking distance of the Glenroy train station.