Spiders. Snakes. Heights. Flying. People are afraid of all sorts of things — some are even afraid of going to the dentist. If that’s true of you, there’s no reason to be ashamed. Millions of people struggle with dentophobia, but sadly, these are often the people who need dental attention the most. Instead of running for cover when your teeth need some TLC, look for ways to manage your anxiety. Your family dentist in Scarborough is here to offer some tips.
Understand the Procedure
Sometimes, not understanding exactly how a dental procedure works can make it seem much worse than it actually is. For example, many people think that root canal therapy is something to dread; in fact, though, it can be a painless procedure.
Do some research on how dentists care for teeth, and you might be surprised by how non-scary various treatments are.
Find a Dentist You’re Comfortable With
If the source of your anxiety is a past bad experience in a dentist’s chair, you might need to start looking around for a new dental care provider. Read reviews of dentists, and ask your friends for references. Visit a few dental offices and take a look around so you have an idea of what to expect.
Also, be sure to talk to any prospective dentist. You can get a feel for their personality. Finding a dentist who is caring and passionate about their work, and who is always learning the latest dental techniques, can go miles toward relieving your anxiety.
Bring a Buddy
Everyone has at least one or two people in their life who seems to make everything better. Talk to your dentist and ask if you can have a friend in the room with you during the procedure. That person can talk to you and distract you from what the dentist is doing in your mouth.
Ask About Sedation Dentistry
If you’re afraid of pain, or if you just have trouble sitting still, ask your dentist about sedation dentistry. There a few different techniques they can use to help you relax while you’re getting worked on.
Nitrous oxide, otherwise known as laughing gas, is a popular option because it is both effective and short-term. You breathe in the gas through a nasal mask, and right away you experience a sense of well-being. Your dentist can adjust your dosage so you stay comfortable. After your treatment is done, you’ll quickly recover from the nitrous oxide so you can get back to your normal routine right away.
Oral conscious sedation is another method. You take a pill shortly before your procedure, and it will enable you to relax. You’ll still be conscious, but many people who have used oral conscious sedation say they don’t remember the procedure after it’s over.
A healthy smile is a huge asset in your life, and thanks to effective ways to manage dental anxiety, taking care of your pearly whites is nothing to be afraid of.
About the Dentists
Drs. Samantha Amaro and Arti Patel are proud to provide dental care to folks in Scarborough. They want their patients to be at ease, so they’re glad to provide sedation dentistry. Contact us at 416-285-4545 if you’d like to learn more about how we strive to make dental care a positive experience for everyone who steps into our office.