Do you get anxious at the thought of visiting the dentist? You're not alone! Dental anxiety affects millions of people worldwide, causing them to avoid essential dental treatments. However, skipping these appointments can lead to more severe dental problems down the line. The good news is that there are several treatment options available for overcoming…
What Causes Dental Anxiety
Causes of dental anxietyEveryone is different, so no one person has the exact same fears when it comes to a dental appointment. However, these are several general categories from which most anxieties stem.
Fear from a past experienceTraumatic events can leave a person afraid of history repeating itself, and a bad time at the dentist’s office is no exception. If someone remembers a visit that caused pain or discomfort, they may be hesitant to return. Even experiences that caused no pain but were tedious and uncomfortable can lead to slight dental anxiety.
Fear of needlesWhen more intensive treatments are needed to repair a tooth, it is not surprising to see a needle in the dentist’s office. Many people have a general fear of needles. Being in a place that already makes a patient uncomfortable can double the anxiety that is felt beforehand.
Fear of painA mythos of horror has always circled dental offices because of negative stories and a tray of diabolical-looking instruments. More likely than that, however, is a past incident that caused pain in someone’s mouth. That can make a patient anxious that the pain will happen again or something worse will happen next time. Fortunately, dental treatment has become a fairly exact science in modern times, eliminating much of the potential for pain. Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Dental Anxiety in Boca Raton, FL.
Fear of loss of control and personal spaceA patient is in the hands of the dentist during most of an appointment. It can feel embarrassing or uncomfortable to have no control over what is happening inside one’s own mouth. Personal space is easily breached by a dentist, causing anxiety that makes people avoid an appointment for too long.
How to handle dental anxietyAvoiding the dentist can harm one’s oral health and cause greater problems in the future. There are ways to handle anxiety in a successful and healthy manner that allow patients to see the dentist on a regular basis.
Coping mechanismsA patient can try practices like meditation, taking deep breaths, relaxing muscles, listening to music or watching something to distract from a future appointment. Techniques like these can calm the mind and make an appointment less stressful.
TherapyIf anxiety is severe, seeing a therapist may also help a patient cope with going to the dentist. A professional who specializes in behavioral therapy may be able to guide a patient through these fears.
ConclusionSometimes a good option for easing dental anxiety is simply informing the dentist about your specific fears. If a dentist understands what makes a patient uncomfortable, they can work to make the visit as easy as possible. Request an appointment or call Regency Court Dentistry at (561) 926-9310 for an appointment in our Boca Raton office.
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