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Dental Fear

Fear of the dentist, also known as odontophobia or dental fear, is a lot more common than one might think and that fear isn’t just limited to children. According to the study Prevalence of dental fear and phobia relative to other fear and phobia subtypes by Oosterink FM, de Jongh A, Hoogstraten J, results of which were published in the April 2009 issue of the European Journal of Oral Sciences, 24.3% of the 1,959 Dutch adults surveyed admitted that they had dental fear.

What we do to Alleviate your Fear

sedation-dentistry_0We take utmost care to help our patients do away with their fears associated with dentistry so that they can have a smooth dental experience.

  • Our dentists will try to put you at ease and make you feel as comfortable as possible. It will be difficult for them to carry out the treatment if you display nervousness or reluctance so they wait until you are ready for it.
  • Before starting the procedure they will explain all the steps to you for removing any doubts.
  • The use of calming music during the procedure serves as a distraction from the prevailing tension.
  • Our dentist rooms have a pleasant smell to soothe the patient’s senses.
  • As dental fear is associated with pain, we try to ensure that the procedure is painless by using local anesthesia.

What Makes You Fear the Dentist?

what-makes-you-fear-the-dentist_0Though it is common to undergo painless dentistry treatments, there are a number of reasons why adults have a fear of dentists or general dental fear. Some of those reasons are as follows:

  • If an adult has had a bad dental experience as a child, then it may lead to long term dental fear.
  • Even if a person hasn’t had his/her own bad dental experience, he/she may still suffer from dentist anxiety after listening to dental fiascos of others.
  • While the person suffering from dental fear may not have felt severe pain during a visit to the dentist, some adults develop a fear of dentists due to an experience with an unpleasant or cold dentist. A dentist with an unpleasant nature can instigate dental anxiety in a person.
  • Sometimes patients are simply afraid of what they do not know. Most dental visits require a dentist to poke and prod inside of a patient’s mouth. However, the patient usually cannot see what is going on and this can evoke dental fear.
  • Whatever the reason, it is important to overcome dental fear.
  • According to the study Association between dental fear and dental attendance among adults in Finland by Pohjola V, Lahti S, Vehkalahti MM, Tolvanen M, and Hausen H published in August 2007 edition of the journal Acta Odontologica Scandinavica, adults who have irregular dental visits have a higher propensity to dental problems that require more intense dental work such as root canals than those who pay visit to the dentist regularly.

Thus, confronting dental fear and visiting the dentist more regularly will actually help a patient avoid more serious treatments.

How to Overcome Dental Anxiety?

how-to-overcome-dental-anxiety_0There are a number of ways of overcoming dental anxiety. Some of those ways that adults overcome their fear of dentists are as follows:

  • As stated earlier, having the right dentist can help alleviate dental fear.
  • Choose one that puts you at ease and makes you feel as comfortable as possible.
  • Do not choose a cheap dentist just save money. By doing so, you might run a higher risk of aggravating your pre-existing propensity to be afraid of your dentist.
  • It is important to find someone who can administer gentle dental work.
  • While it may not seem like a conventional way to overcome dental anxiety, dental tourism can actually help put you at ease. You can consider getting bridges, crowns or dental implants in Costa Rica or other leading tooth tourism destinations of the world.
  • Just imagine – instead of taking a few hours off from work to go to the dentist in the middle of your stressful workday, you do it while your entire body and mind is at greater peace.

While you’re on vacation for getting a full mouth restoration in Costa Rica, you are more likely to be enjoying calmer state of being, which means going to the dentist will be a less stressful activity.

If you really want to overcome dental anxiety, you need to be in a dental hospital that is clean and well equipped.

  • Meditate beforehand. Clearing the mind is known to help people overcome any kind of phobia, including dental phobia.
  • Confront your fear, don’t suppress it. While pushing your fear of dentists to the side might be a short term solution, it won’t help you in the long run. Instead, you should try to address your fear.
  • You may be afraid of the dentist without really knowing why. Spend some time trying to reflect upon the reason and seeing if there is a way you can overcome what might be an irrational fear.

Sedation Dentistry

  • If none of these tactics help you overcome your dental fear, you may want to consider sedation dentistry.
  • Sedation dentistry, sometimes known as sleep dentistry, allows patients with severe dental anxiety to undergo sedation prior to receiving dental treatment.
  • Options for sedation dentistry include:
    • Laughing Gas
    • Oral Dental Sedation
    • IV sedation

If you are interested in sedation dentistry or overcoming your dental fear, you may want to consider dental tourism. For a dental payment plan, ask for a free dental implant quote.