How to Relieve Dental Anxiety

Visiting the dentist is essential to keep your teeth healthy and detect any issues with your oral health. However, for some people visiting the dentist is an anxiety-provoking experience. In some cases, dental anxiety can be severe and become a phobia. The phobia of visiting the dentist is known as dentophobia and is something that affects a great many people. Whether you have a mild fear of visiting the dentist or a severe phobia, it is still essential to take care of your teeth. So, finding ways to reduce your worry and ease your dental anxiety is essential to protect your oral health.

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There are many reasons people develop a fear of visiting the dentist. Perhaps they have had a negative experience in the past, or maybe they are concerned that there is something wrong with their teeth and are worried about having treatment. Whatever your reasons may be for having dental anxiety, there are ways to make visiting the dentist easier on yourself. Take a look at these tips to reduce your dental anxiety:

Find the Right Dentist

If you are not happy with your current dentist, this may be exacerbating your fear. Changing your dentist and visiting a different dental office can be really helpful. Carrying out a little research and selecting a dentist that has a calming, relaxed treatment environment can transform trips to the dentist from something you dread into a positive experience. Choosing a dentist that is highly experienced and is used to treating patients with dental anxiety is also really beneficial and will help you to feel at ease during your visits.

It is helpful to discuss your fear of attending dental exams with your dentist ahead of your visit. Letting your dentist know about your phobia will ensure that they can make your consultation as stress-free as possible. 

Calm Your Mind

Staying calm is the best way to stop your dental anxiety from escalating. Reducing your stress before you even arrive at the dentist’s office will prevent anxiety from building up. Practicing breathing techniques can be helpful when trying to stay calm. It is also wise to do all that you can to avoid the dental visit from becoming stressful by ensuring you leave early enough to get to the dentist’s office and allow enough time to park up without needing to rush. Staying calm and avoiding unnecessary stress is a great way to feel in control of the situation and keep your anxiety levels low.

Bring a Friend

Bringing a friend to your dental check-up is a great way to feel more at ease. Having someone with you provides a reassuring presence and should help you to feel more relaxed about the situation. It is best to check before your visit to ensure that you can bring someone along to your consultation to help you cope with your dental anxiety.

Following these steps should help reduce the worry of visiting the dentist and ensure that your teeth get the care they deserve.

Things You Should Never Hide From Your Dentist

Personal care often remains a neglected issue by many, especially when it comes to oral hygiene and dental health. If you simply search online for a dentist who works with kids, you will find out that many people hide important and relevant information relating to their medical history and daily routine. This practice eventually harms them in the long run. 

Talking about your routine and sharing important information with your dentist can help you to cater to your issues wisely. Here, we would like to suggest some of the things that you should never hide from your dentist and communicate it to them as this will benefit you in terms of your health and wellbeing.

  1. The Truth about Smoking: Smoking has always been the subject of debate, such as it exerts harmful effects on lungs. Medical research suggests smoking is associated with many of the adverse effects on your dental cavity. Apart from adverse pulmonary effects, it is one of the foremost reasons for problems, such as causing the oral cavity. If you are about to visit a dentist, you do not have to lie about your smoking habit as the dentist will immediately get to know about it. Smoking has been observed to stain your teeth. Excessive formation and accumulation of plaque and tartar can also be observed as a clear indication of it. At the end of the day, it is the core reason for bad breath and gum diseases that are responsible for salivary gland inflammation. 
  2. Excessive Soda Consumption: Even if you try to avoid the question about consuming soda, you will not be able to hide it because soda has been the root-cause in decomposing the enamel of the teeth. Even if you lie or hide it from your dentist, he will surely get to know once he starts the oral cavity examination and you will have no other option than to admit the habit. A combination of soda and sugar creates a relationship that is very tough for teeth enamel to resist. This leads your oral cavity to be sensitive and enhances tooth decay. So, hiding such information from your dentist may never be suitable.
  3. Flossing Frequency: People busy with their busy routine do not feel the need of maintaining their oral hygiene. Soon after consuming food, many of us rinse our mouth but do not consider flossing as an important practice. Flossing is a practice that is intended to remove the food and plaque particles that accumulate between the teeth but are not removed by rinsing the oral cavity. If you are not able to maintain a flossing routine, share this with the dentist. Dentists recommend flossing at least once a day to get rid of plaque and tartar that become the catalyst for many of gum diseases. Finding the right dentist and setting up a checkup routine is the key.
  4. Medical History: Medical history is something that people try to hide and are not fond of discussing it with their dentist. But, here’s where the issue arises. We would highly recommend and advise sharing your medical history with the dentist as he may suggest some preventive medicines that may affect or trigger your medical history and cause a relapse. Diabetes and autoimmune diseases are likely to cause infection with the use of medical and surgical instruments. So, before you visit the dentist, you need to think about sharing your entire medical history if you want a complete cure from your dental issues. A dentist can do wonders for you.
  5. Oral Hygiene and Fertility: Good oral hygiene is interrelated to your fertility. You will surely be amazed to know that oral hygiene has a direct association with fertility. When it comes to male fertility, issues like poor sperm motility and sperm morphology are the two main problems identified as related to poor oral hygiene. If you are not able to communicate about your physical relationship with your dentist, it may affect you in your personal life. Similarly, when we talk about women, preterm labor is the most important thing to look upon as it is related to poor oral hygiene. We would recommend that you discuss your pregnancy status with your dentist to keep your personal life stable and physically healthy. For instance, dental X-rays have been reported to cause problems to female fertility, so you must communicate the issue to your dentist.
  6. Bruxism: Bruxism is a para-functional oral activity in which an individual is likely to gnash and grind teeth. This is a disorder that can arise due to stress and in some patients, due to anxiety. If you have a disorder of bruxism, the foremost thing to do is to communicate it to your dentist. The reason why you need to communicate is that it may directly affect your dental treatments. In some cases, dental caps have been observed to dislocate due to unconscious bruxism. This not only creates a short term problem but can also reflect in long-term facial pain and teeth decomposition.
  7. Temporomandibular Joint Disorder: Temporomandibular Joint, commonly known as TMJ is a connecting joint between the skull and the temporal bones. It is one of the most sensitive joints of the skull and can be harmed by a sharp instrument. This act is more viable to happen during the dental filling or root canal when the dental instruments are very close to the TMJ. Slight negligence from either of the patient or dentist can harm the said joint. Medical researchers suggest that continuous headache has also been found to be a cause of the disorder. So if you are a person with frequent headache problems, you need to communicate it to your dentist so he may rectify the issue.

Conclusion: People assume that maintaining dental hygiene is one of the most expensive personal care routines, which also gives you a lot of pain. Pain and payment are the two concerns that create a barrier between the dentist and people. In a certain way, the dentist acts as a detective to find out the root cause of the dental problem. Even though you try to hide a lot of things from the dentist, he gets to know many things that you intentionally or unintentionally try to hide. As discussed, hiding important information has some severe consequences, you must think twice before you hide.

Help Manage Your Child’s Dental Anxiety

If you ask any child, they can probably tell you that going to the dentist is the last thing they want to do. Most children are afraid of going to the dentist – the only problem with this is that it is vital for children to go to the dentist once or twice a year. Children must go to the dentist for a variety of reasons – they have new teeth coming in and they can be more susceptible to cavities, mainly because they eat a lot of candy and they have a high sugar content in their food. When it comes down to it, there are many ways to alleviate a child’s dental anxiety. Here are five tips to help parents manage their child’s dental anxiety.

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The earlier the better. Alleviating a child’s fear of dentists earlier in their life is important, because they will be more accustomed to going to the dentist when they get older. You can imagine going to the dentist the first time – with all their shiny metals tools – it would scare any child. So, it is crucial that you build up a child’s comfort factor when it comes to going to the dentist. You usually want to start when your child’s first teeth come in.

Make it easy. Most parents assume that they have to explain to their child about all the procedures that a dentist will perform, but if you want to alleviate a child’s anxiety, you want to keep it vague. The reason for this is simple: the more you explain to them, the more questions your child will have. The more questions there are, the more nervous they will get. This is especially the case when they are in the chair and asking about the tools on the dentist’s table.

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