Dental Health Mental & Emotional Health

How to Overcome Dental Anxiety: 5 Effective Steps That Work

How to overcome dental anxiety
Written by Collins Nwokolo

Maintaining good oral hygiene is always a good idea for healthy teeth. But for complete care, it’s really important to visit your dentist every six months for dental checkup and cleaning. “What? wait, visit a dentist? No, I am perfectly fine,” will be an immediate reply from the people who experience dental phobia or dental anxiety.

Some people may visit the general physicians even for n number of times, but they don’t dare to visit a dentist even once. There are several reasons behind their anxiety or stress or dental phobia whatever you may call. Some common fears are:

1. The needles
2. The sound of the drill makes them uncomfortable
3. The pain they would experience during the treatment
4. Bad experience in the previous treatments/visits
5. Distress on their bad oral health.


How to Overcome Dental Anxiety

How to overcome dental anxiety

How to overcome dental anxiety

Knowing how to overcome dental anxiety is imperative to improving your oral health. Hence, learn how you overcome each of the above fear.

1. The needles

Fear of needles isn’t just with the dentist, some have the fear of needles with any physician they visit. Injecting on the gums makes them more stressed and feel uncomfortable making them avoid dental visits. Talk to your dentist about your fear. Since its a common fear among people, your dentist will definitely have a solution for it. Ensure that your dentist uses a good and effective anesthetic gel before your injection.

Surveys say that most of the people overcome their dental fear when their dentist uses the numbing gel before injecting on your gums.

2. The sound of the drill

A dental drill is a small hand pieced dental tool used during dental treatments mainly to remove cavities, decay, during implantation. Your infected part of the mouth will be numbed before using the drill tool so that you feel no pain during the procedure, still, you may feel stressed and uncomfortable because of the sound and vibration produced by the drill.
It’s better to carry your headphones along with you during the procedure to divert yourself from the sound and the vibration produced.

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3. The pain

Some may feel the pain before going to the dentist as they think of the dental tools and the set up which will be really scary. If you are worried about the pain you will undergo, speak your heart out to your dentist as he/she might understand your anxiety.
The fear of pain is something you develop within yourself by imagining that something might occur leaving you in vain. So stop assuming the pain before experiencing it. Stay cool and self-motivated to rescue yourself from dental complications rather than fearing of the pain which won’t even exist for a while.


4. One Bad experience

Dentophobia is one of the common medical-related phobia, it occurs usually to a bad experience in your first time with the dentist.

This is a common complaint among the patients. Sometimes one might have a bitter experience during their very first dental visit which results in hatred towards the dentists and increases your fear upon the next visit. You may come up with several reasons just to avoid the visit. By doing so you may get trapped to any dental complications. Such situations are common, you need not worry about it. It’s our responsibility to take good care of our teeth. It’s nothing wrong in visiting some other dentist you are comfortable with so that he/she can understand you and treat you accordingly. Things never go smooth unless you speak up and find the best dentist for you.


5. Bad Oral Health

When you don’t practice good oral hygiene or take proper foods for a healthy teeth, you may experience bad teeth problems. Your embarrassment about your teeth’s condition during your dental visit will make you feel uncomfortable. Your dentist will deal with damaged teeth and the worst teeth every day. There are people worse than your dental condition, it’s totally your dentist’s responsibility to take care of your teeth.

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To feel better, just make a phone call prior to your visit and explain your anxiety about your bad teeth. This reduces your anxiety when your dentist understands you.

Steps to overcome your dental anxiety

How to overcome dental anxiety

How to overcome dental anxiety

1. Recognize your fear

Identify your fear so that you will know what exactly fears you. Either you fear about going to the dentist or about the pain or anything else. Write down all your fears and explain it clearly with your dentist to find a solution and he/she will help you to get rid of it.

2. Find the perfect dentist for you

Finding the right dentist is one of the most important things in overcoming your fear. A dentist needs to be calm and must listen to you patiently about your problems and fear so that he/she can give you the best treatment ever. Get help from your family and friends on finding the best dentist for your treatment. Also, you can do some online research to find them out. Filter out the dentists and list the details of the dentists. Call the dentist one by one and start talking. Watch out how you are treated by the person who speaks over the phone. If you are comfortable over the phone, fix an appointment and pay a visit to the clinic. During your visit, observe the clinic. Check whether it is clean and whether it makes you feel relaxed. Visit the dentist and build up a conversation. If you are satisfied with the dentist, you can share what you fear about. A right dentist will always be on your back to help you and treat you from your dental problems.

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3. Take someone with you

Someone whom you love the most, someone who can give you a helping hand to overcome the fear of that dental chair either your friend or your family member or your loved one. Take anyone you are comfortable with to ease the environment and to reduce your stress. It will be so helpful for you if the person you are taking fear doesn’t have any dental fear or anxiety.

4. Distract Yourself

Distraction can help you to think something else other than the treatment so that you can ease yourself. Bring up your headphones and enjoy listening to some good music to stay calm and cool. Mainly, while drilling, the sound and vibration can be distracted by some good music or videos.

5. Make sedatives as a choice

Sedation helps a patient to remain calm and relaxed during the treatment. Some sedatives include local anesthesia, Nitrous oxide, oral and IV sedation. Have a conversation with your dentist on taking sedatives. If it is advisable, get to know which sedative is effective for you and consider using it.

How to overcome dental anxiety

Bottom Line

If you have dental anxiety, you should strive hard and learn how to overcome dental anxiety. This article have shown you five possible reasons for your dental anxiety and ways to overcome dental anxiety. Follow them and you’ll improve your dental health.




Author’s Bio:

Anya is a dedicated content writer and a health enthusiast who mostly loves to research and write more health-related blogs. Right now, she is associated with Locus Dental Care as a content writer and blogger focused on dental health. She loves to help people to find solutions for their health problems through her simple yet educative blogs.

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About the author

Collins Nwokolo

Collins Nwokolo is a passionate medical physiologist, health blogger and an amazing writer. He is a health and fitness enthusiast who loves sharing helpful information to people.

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