Almost 20% of people experience such high anxiety about the dentist that they only go when absolutely necessary. And some refuse to go at all. That’s a big problem for your oral health since it means problems can get worse before a dentist has a chance to help.
It’s mission-critical to visit your dentist regularly to prevent small concerns from becoming big problems. That’s why we’ve put together these five tips for getting over your dental anxiety. Tap into these calming steps so you can feel better about getting back to the dentist.
1. Speak Up About Dental Anxiety
For starters, let your dentist know about your impending anxiety. They can use certain medications to alleviate your fear, and they can help calm your anxiety.
Dentists know that people avoid going to them because of this very problem, and they want to help. When the entire staff knows about your anxiety, they can help ease your mind, so don’t be afraid to speak up.
2. Choose the Right Dentist
If you’re nervous, shop around until you find the right dentist for you. Going to see a dentist who makes you feel uncomfortable or who can’t help you manage your anxiety will only make things worse.
If you feel as though your dentist isn’t adequately addressing your fears, it’s time to find someone who will. It’s worthwhile to look around until you find someone you can be truly comfortable with during your dental visits.
3. Relaxation Techniques
You will want to explore ways to help you feel as relaxed as possible when you visit the dentist. Relaxation techniques like meditation and listening to calming music can help alleviate your anxiety.
You might also try deep breathing techniques that expand your belly and chest to activate your parasympathetic nervous system. That’s the nervous system that calms you down when you feel fearful.
4. Come Early and Give Yourself Plenty of Time
It’s also important to avoid causing added stress by being late or needing to leave early. Make sure you amend your daily schedule, so you have time to arrive early. Arriving early is helpful if you need to complete paperwork. But it’s also less intense when you can take your time and not feel the pressures of running late.
Additionally, it’s a good idea to give yourself plenty of time following your dental visit so you won’t feel stressed if it’s taking longer than expected.
5. Bring a Friend
There’s nothing like a good friend to help you feel calm about a dental visit. They can help you to relax during your wait. And having a pal nearby can make the dental appointment more comfortable for you.
Your dentist shouldn’t mind if you ask someone to come with you so you can feel more relaxed.
Ask Us for Help with Dental Anxiety!
At Duval Periodontics, we understand why you might feel anxious, and we’re happy to help alleviate your fears. Just talk to us about what we can do to help you calm your dental anxiety. Give our office a call today!