Do you feel nervous about visiting the dentist? You’re not alone. Dental phobia also known as odontophobia, or fear of dentists, is a common phobia among people of all ages.
Most people can weather a trip to the dentist with some degree of anxiety, but for some, even the idea is terrifying. And when that fear kicks in and you avoid your regular checkups, you are putting your oral health at risk.
Dental phobia is generally triggered by a previous traumatic experience, but can also be provoked by the sound of a drill or the thought of needles. Even the smell of dental surgery can send someone into an extreme state of panic.
Whatever caused your fear of the dentist, our goal is to make your visits as comfortable as possible, making sure your receive the proper care that is needed. There are many solutions for dental anxiety, and we are ready to help.
Feeling fearful about visiting a dentist is not so uncommon. About 40 million Americans do their best to postpone or avoid their dental visits because of dental anxiety and dental phobia. Believe it or not, fear is a perfectly healthy emotion. Feeling as if you have no control or the thought of discovering issues that require further treatment can make anyone want to skip their dental appointment.
Unfortunately, years of avoidance and missed appointments can have severe consequences for both oral and mental health. It’s not uncommon for dentists to encounter patients who endure years of pain, gum disease, lose or missing teeth and ill-health before finally confronting their fear. Some even turn to self-treatment rather than overcoming their anxiety.
Staying on top of your annual preventative care, like check-ups and cleanings, will help lower your chances of encountering more serious dental conditions, and more costly dental treatments, down the road. But what can you do if your fear is stopping you from seeing a dentist? First, understand that dental fear or phobia is normal, and you shouldn’t be embarrassed by it. Explain your situation when you make your appointment and remind the staff once you arrive. Remember, our staff is here to help you feel more at ease.
Not all dental fears are the same. It’s normal to feel a little bit anxious when it comes to dental appointments. But when your anxiety prevents you from receiving the care you need, that is what we call dental phobia.
The feelings of fear, nerves and anxiety for those suffering from a dental phobia are very real and can be very upsetting and difficult to overcome. We often find that patients stem from the idea that dental procedures represent a loss of control, others from negative childhood experiences. Their fear is so real, they often cancel dental appointments and treatments they badly want and need, which results in unnecessary pain and further anxiety, creating a vicious circle that can be difficult to break.
Overcoming dental fear is a challenging task. However, modern dentistry has moved on tremendously in the last few years. At Digital Dental Studio we believe you deserve the best dental care possible. Our team is trained in state of the art procedures and are here to make sure you understand step by step, what you will be going through; this will calm your nerves and make you feel more in control.
There are plenty of signs that may indicate that a patient has dental anxiety. While some signs and symptoms are apparent, some are hard to spot. Here are some signs that you need to look out for whether or not you have dental anxiety:
While the exact cause of dental anxiety is not fully understood, evidence points toward psychological and physical factors. One known cause of dental anxiety is trauma. A previous bad experience at the dentist can lead to anxiety by association. Whenever they visit their dentist, they will never forget that one bad moment they had before, even if it was years ago. Many issues can cause anxiety in dental patients. Here are some common causes of dental anxiety:
Avoiding the dentist can create a cycle of poor oral health. If you’re terrified of going to the dentist, your fear may even put you at risk of having an infection, loose teeth, gum disease that can make you feel self-conscious and embarrassed, therefore leading you to not smile and further your anxiety by avoiding social gatherings.
Unfortunately, oral health issues can affect your general health too. Poor oral health has been linked to conditions such as heart disease and lung infections. Avoiding the dentist can also take an emotional toll. Without dental treatment, you will likely suffer from cosmetic issues that affect your teeth and gums.
Thankfully, you don’t have to live with dental anxiety or phobia. There are easy and effective ways to overcome your fear.
While there are many effective strategies for easing your fear and anxiety about the dentist, you just need to find the one strategy — or combination of strategies — that works best for you.
We offer a Zen experience for all. From a massage chair, personalized music to an eye mask that has incorporated meditative music! Anything to make you feel relaxed and comfortable! But most importantly we take certain steps to ensure you feel relaxed at all times:
You’ll be in good hands with our calming staff. Our entire crew is trained to listen intently to your needs and answer any questions you have about your treatment. We’ll make sure you have all the information you need about your dental care and about us before any work is done.
Undergoing complex dental procedures can be a cause of dental anxiety. We strive to create a great experience for patients, if you have severe anxiety or phobia, we do recommend treatment under sedation. Since you are totally relaxed under sedation, we can get more work done in a single visit. This is a win for both of us, You get to save time and money since you need to visit the dentist less often. Meanwhile, we can accomplish all that needs to be done during your visit. We can complete multiple procedures while you are under sedation, such as:
The connection between your dental health and overall health is, by now, well-established. Skipping regular checkups due to fear, or any other reason, puts your general health at risk, too. We recommend 2 visits a year to avoid further oral health complications.
At Digital Dental Studio, we make it our business to create a truly welcoming environment. Our friendly team will take as much time as you need to discuss your options, making sure you fully understand, and are happy with your treatment plan. Some patients are of course more nervous than others and we have put a lot of emphasis on ways to make them feel more secure and begin to trust that we want them to feel safe, secure and relaxed.
We can help you overcome your fears by treating you with gentleness and patience. If you are unsure, come and visit us and take a look around. Meet our incredible team. We simply want to help you to overcome your fears so that you are pain-free and can smile with confidence again