Easing Dental Anxiety
If you’ve ever dealt with nerves, the jitters, or anxiety about visiting your dentist, know that you are not alone … let’s talk about easing dental anxiety.
According to article, Why Are People Afraid of the Dentist? Observations and Explanations,
“Dental anxiety, or dental fear, is estimated to affect approximately 36% of the population, with a further 12% suffering from extreme dental fear. This anxiety can have serious repercussions in terms of an individual’s oral health, and it is considered to be a significant barrier to dental attendance resulting in poor attendance.”
- Do You Suffer from Dental Anxiety? Seven Tips to Ease Your Anxiety
- Why are people afraid of the dentist?
Downside of Avoiding Dental Offices
Seeing your dentist for routine checkups and maintenance is too important to your health and wellbeing to skip. When you don’t see your dentist, you’re at a much higher risk for:
- Bad breath
- Tooth loss
- Gum disease
- Discolored teeth
- Plaque and tartar
More Tips from the American Dental Association: Coping with Dental Anxiety
Easing Dental Anxiety: Tips and Tricks
Rather than postponing or cancelling visits, let’s look at some of the coping mechanisms for dental anxiety.
Related Article: Easing Dental Anxiety: Coping Methods Can Help
Psychological Coping Mechanisms
- Deep breathing
- Guided imagery – visualizing happy thoughts, nostalgic thoughts
- Distraction (tv, music, stress ball, etc.)
- Using a weighted blanket
Bring a Friend
Ask your dentist if a relative or a friend can accompany you to your dental appointment. Having a familiar person nearby may calm nerves and make you feel safe.
In some cases, medication may help with dental anxiety. Analgesia is an over-the-counter medication that are sometimes used to reduce pain and anxiety, or sometimes, dentists will use laughing gas to ease anxiety.
Make Sure to Speak Up
Let our dental office know beforehand that you experience dental anxiety. It can make a world of difference if Dr. Skrobanek and his Team are aware of your anxiety and can be prepared prior to your appointment. You can also agree on a signal with Dr. Skrobanek if you ever need to take a break. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, sometimes knowing exactly what will happen, and when, can alleviate some nerves.
A Few More Tips
- Avoid caffeine and sugar before any appointments – these can make you jittery and more anxious. Instead, eat a high protein snack or meal.
- Choose an appointment time that is the least stressful for you.
- Arrive on time for your appointment – try not to arrive too soon.
Easing Dental Anxiety at GPS Dental
The mouth is a great window to the rest of your body, so when you visit us at GPS Dental, we can take a peek into your overall health during your regular dental cleanings and exams. This could save you money, time, and protect your health down the road. Learn how HERE.
When your Dr. Skrobanek catches a problem early, there’s a much better chance of figuring out what’s going on and treating it early, with a higher success rate. Oftentimes, dentists can detect warning signs before we experience any symptoms. Actually, oral health is an easy way to boost your immune system, learn more HERE.
Luckily, when depression or anxiety takes a toll on oral health, there are ways to fight back. The simplest step in easing your dental anxiety that you can take is to maintain your oral health by brushing twice a day, flossing daily and scheduling regular dental appointments with Dr. Skrobanek and his team at GPS Dental. Keeping up these basic oral health habits can go a long way to keeping your mouth in tip-top shape.
Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek and his experienced, friendly team at GPS Dental offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implants, sleep apnea, TMJ / TMD Treatment, cosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at (210) 633-3477 to make an appointment.