Fear and anxiety are two of the most common issues I come across in treating my patients. Whether it be from a bad experience with a previous dentist or the fact that the mouth is a very personal area to work on especially, while a patient is conscious, it is the leading factor in why people do not go to the dentist or receive the necessary treatment to improve their dental health.
Lying back and being asked to open your mouth while someone pokes and prods with instruments is certainly awkward. Thus I try to make this process as painless and as comfortable as possible. I offer oral sedation medication, which requires a patient to arrange transportation to and from their dental appointment. I make a point to talk about and recognize their fears rationally and tangibly. They are not alone and should not feel shame about having such anxiety and fear. Needles and drills are frightening based on the sight and sound of them alone to many people, especially with a near strange placing them in your mouth, which is why many patients with dental phobia wear headphones and sunglasses while receiving treatment at my office.
Developments in dental technology and practices now allow for less painful and more efficient treatment means, but many still have fear from the days of old. I try to deliver my patient’s ideal dental experience. I do this by asking what they expect from me regarding addressing their concerns and what the best means is for us to accomplish this together with them as a team.
I encourage my patients to keep an open mind and let them know that I respect their fears and the reality of their anxiety. This is an important dialogue that allows my patients to voice their fears and grants me insight into how best to prove to them the dentist does not have to be a dreaded experience and work together to make their biannual visit an important and integral part of their overall health.
For more information, see Chandler sedation dentist.