You’ve probably heard it before: “I’d rather (fill in the blank) than go to the dentist.” We’re pretty sure that most people don’t actually hate dentists, so why are we the butt of so many jokes? We think it’s because so many people fear going to the dentist. If you are one of those people, we have a few helpful hints that might make your next visit less anxiety-riddled and more pleasant.
1. Do your research. Ask friends and family about their dentists. What are the office surroundings like? What is the overall demeanor of the team? Once you think you’ve found someone who caters to those with dentistry-related anxiety, get online and peruse their website. If you’re still not comfortable, call and ask if you can visit the office in person so you can take in your surroundings. Knowing what and whom you will encounter when you visit will keep surprises at bay and make you more comfortable.
2. Bring your own entertainment. Some people experience fear from the mere sounds associated with dentistry. If you come to your visit prepared with a calming playlist and some earbuds, it will help block any sounds which might be bothersome or scary. Please just make sure your hygienist and dentist can communicate with you at all times, we just want to make sure and know you are doing ok, or you can just give us the image thumbs up!
3. Inquire about sedation dentistry. Some patients just need to have the edge taken off, which is why this is such a good option. We’re not talking about putting you completely under, though. Nitrous oxide is a safe, comfortable, and commonly used gas that is administered through a nasal tube and keeps patients relaxed as long as you are breathing it. Just a few minutes after it is removed, the effects have cleared your system and you can even drive yourself back to work or home right after your appointment. As long as you are healthy, another option we may consider is an oral anxiety medication that could help ease your fears when if you need to schedule a more involved procedure. This will require you to have a ride to and from your dental appointment.
4. Don’t put it off. The longer you put off seeing the dentist, the longer your fears will build. Going with regularity functions as a kind of exposure therapy; each time you are exposed to the dentist and have a positive experience, your fears are reduced. Make sure you go at least twice a year (or more, if recommended by your dentist) to demystify the process.
At Dental Care of Boca Raton, we are passionate about helping our patients overcome their fear of going to the dentist. When you are comfortable with our office, team members, and treatment methods, then we are able to give you the smile you deserve. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment.