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Dealing With Dental Anxiety

Posted by AESTHETIC DENTISTRY on Apr 12 2021, 01:08 AM

Dealing With Dental Anxiety

For the roughly 70 percent of Americans who suffer from varying degrees of dental anxiety, the pandemic has made a built-in excuse to avoid that annual or bi-annual visit to the dentist. But we don’t need to tell you why this is a bad idea. Dental health is essential to overall body health, and if left unchecked, most oral health problems will get worse - not better. That tiny cavity that may have required a filling can turn into a root canal. That worrisome grinding you weren’t really doing consciously could turn into a chipped or cracked tooth. Even gingivitis can get worse and become periodontitis, putting your teeth and gums in jeopardy. But even for those who know the risks, heading back to that dental chair can be scary. Here are some tips for those who may be afraid to take that big step to get back into the dental office and regain control of their oral health.

Take Baby Steps

The first step to getting your oral health under control is making the appointment to be seen by Dr. Abelar. Thankfully our friendly staff will make this step easy! Just give us a call and we’ll find a time that works for you. If you are feeling anxious about your appointment, schedule it out far enough to give yourself some time to relax a little before your appointment. Let our staff know if you are experiencing any anxiety so we can help you on the day of your appointment. 

Figure Out What Bothers You

Getting to the root of your dental anxiety is a helpful way to address it. Are you afraid of potential pain? Does the drill noise scare you, even if it's coming from another room? We can help you come up with solutions to these problems. For example, if we are performing a painful procedure there are many sedation options available that Dr. Abelar will happily discuss with you.  For those afraid of the drill sound, wearing headphones or earplugs may help drown out that noise and alleviate some of that stress.

Get Ready

Once you know your appointment is approaching, prepare yourself. Whether you’re ready to try nitrous oxide, have a mantra to repeat to yourself, have adapted breathing techniques, or have brought along some calming oils, finding something that will calm you down during your procedure is a great way to relax. Use the time between booking and attending your appointment to figure out what might help soothe you during your procedure or exam.

Ultimately, we know visiting the dentist can be scary, but letting oral health problems spiral out of control due to lack of attention can be scarier, so don’t put off your dental exam any longer. We are open and ready to serve you with new safety protocols in place. For any questions about COVID-19 safety, sedation dentistry, or any other concerns, please contact Dr. Abelar’s office.


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