Conquering Your Dental Fear & Anxiety

July 15, 2021 Jeffrey T. Baker, DDS PC

Even though it can be the topic of a lot of jokes, dental anxiety is no laughing matter. Our Shelby Township dentists can of course offer laughing gas to help, but people often don’t get to the point where they can use it to combat their negative emotions. After all, there is a whole spectrum of dental phobias from slight nervousness and hesitation to visibly terrified to complete avoidance.

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Here’s what you need to know about dental fear, anxiety, and phobia.

Why Dental Anxiety Is a Problem

The biggest issue with dental fear and anxiety is it often prevents people from getting the care they need, which results in their problem(s) worsening.

Essentially, the root of why some patients don’t want to go to the dentist is because they’re afraid of any number of possibilities. However, when routine oral health checkups and teeth cleanings are missed, the problem has more time to develop. This often results in more fear/anxiety making it a malicious cycle.

Dental anxiety is more common than most people realize. Approximately 25% of American adults and children suffer from some form of dental fear or dental phobia. If you identify with this statistic, you have many helpful options. By talking with our dentists and looking into sedation dentistry,you can feel more comfortable and relaxed during your next dental visit.

If you feel apprehensive about sitting in the dental chair, simply let our dentists know your feelings. Dental anxiety and phobias can have harmful consequences, though each occurs differently. Anxiety is milder and causes general uneasiness, while phobia describes an intense fear or dread.

If you think you suffer from either, talking is always best. Our dentists deal with anxious patients every day and want to help you overcome your fear. Communicating with our dentists will lead to more trust and comfort in the end.

How Sedation Dentistry Can Help

Dentists sometimes administer laughing gas to help soothe stressed-out patients. Many patients find that this helpskeep them relaxed and calm throughout the procedure. However, increased adrenaline in some patients may combat the novocain and make this less effective.

If you’ve been putting off years of dental work because of anxiety or fear, our specially trained and certified sedation dentists may be able to help. Sedation dentistry involves taking a small pill before beginning a procedure — and it is a simple, safe process that keeps you awake throughout the operation, without having any memory of the dental treatments performed.

You will also be able to have longer, more frequent and more complex dental procedures without the usual discomfort. Simply by taking a pill, you can have a comfortable, positive dental experience and catch up on years of dental work in one or two visits.

If you are still unsure about any/all of these options, we encourage you to talk with our dentists so you can get the answers to any questions you may still have and see what is best for you to feel the most comfortable during your appointment.

Schedule an Appointment

If you want to learn more about how our dentists in Shelby Charter Township, MI, can work with you to overcome your dental fear and anxiety, call the dental office of Jeffrey T. Baker DDS PC at (586) 992-9222 to request an appointment. Above all else, we aim to create an ideal environment and experience for all our patients.

This blog post has been updated.

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