Oral & Vision Health Blog

Guest Blogger: Defeat your Fear of the Dentist

Odontophobia or dentophobia refers to an excessive fear of dentistry and receiving dental care. While not everyone has the same fear, it’s safe to assume most people have a certain degree of dental phobia, one way or another.

Fortunately, this fear of the dentist can be remedied easily by taking the following steps:

Acknowledge your fears. Fear of dentists is something many people share. While the origin of this fear may vary, it pays to acknowledge that a visit to the dentist is not exactly a walk in the park. Regardless of whether the fear is rooted in an upsetting dental experience as a child or "inherited" from friends’ and family’s “dental horror stories,” it will work wonders if you first acknowledge the existence of that fear. Recognize that while it is there, it doesn’t necessarily mean the fear is valid. Also remind yourself that your dentist is not only competent but is trained and equipped with both the tools and techniques to minimize, if not totally eliminate, pain and discomfort.

Find the "right" dentist for you. Finding a dentist willing to work with your anxiety and discomfort is very easy. In fact, many dentists have adapted practices that are geared toward people who have a fear of dental procedures. Methods can include but are not limited to hypnosis and sedation (found to be safe and effective in a study), plus a whole lot of reassurance thrown in. In addition, it will also be helpful if you schedule a visit first just so you can get a feel of what to expect prior to getting any work done. Of course, be prepared to still pay for the dentist’s time. While this may seem like an expense you can do without, it can be a small price to pay for your ease and comfort.

If your fears are extreme, sedation may be the answer. Fortunately, a dentist can provide sedation options for you to consider. Depending on your preference, you have the option to take a "calming" pill at least an hour prior to your dental visit. Or you can opt for general anesthesia if that is something you are more comfortable with. In addition, nitrous oxide (commonly referred to as "laughing gas") is another alternative and is cited by the ADA. Also, a dentist can administer a local anesthetic to numb the area prior to beginning any procedure.

While dental fear and anxiety is something from which many people suffer, it is reassuring to know that there are ways to defeat this unwarranted fear.

As a professional provider of written content, Hugo Massey makes it a point not just to provide meaningful content but that which is useful as well. His career has been a fruitful one, with dozens of satisfied clients that could attest to his skill and creativity. He is currently one of Authority Specialists’ pioneering writers that specialize in the medical and health care industry. When not writing, Hugo can often be found on some quiet creek teaching his son how to fish.


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