The fear of being in a dental clinic is something that a lot of people have. According to a survey, 9% to 20% of Americans are experiencing anxiety  whenever they know that they have an appointment with the dentist. This is something that many people around the world are experiencing. There are people who have phobia and there are also those who are just experiencing anxiety. For people with dental phobia, the fear may be irrational but they cannot do anything about it.
What Causes Dental Anxiety
There are different symptoms that you can observe from a person who is experiencing dental anxiety. They may have trouble sleeping before the day of the treatment. They may feel nervous while they are in the waiting room. Even the thought of being in the dental clinic can cause uneasiness. To understand the reality about dental anxiety, here are its most common causes :
- Fear of Pain
This is one of the most common reasons why a lot of people are avoiding their dentists. This is something that may have come from a past experience. Most people who show this symptom have a painful experience with a certain dental treatment. But with today’s advanced technology and the improvement in dental health procedures, dentists can now eliminate pain with sedation and sleep dentistry options.
- Fear of Injections
A lot of people are afraid of needles. Most of them are afraid of needs that are injected in the mouth. For other people, they are afraid that the anesthesia is not going to work. This is something that is also related to the fear of pain. For some, they are also thinking that the dose may not be enough to cover the pain.
- Fear of Anesthetic Side Effects
Aside from the fear of the needle, some people are also afraid of the side effects of the anesthetic. They have the fear that it may have a long term effect on their health. Aside from that, there is also a misconception that anesthetic is not good for you when it is used on the mouth. This is why it is very important that you should be asking questions if you have one before any treatment. This way, you will be able to conquer your fears.
- Fear of Dental Implantations
Dental implants are permanent solutions of teeth loss. This is also one of the most common and most recent solutions to this kind of problem. There are people who are afraid of implants because of the procedure. They are overwhelmed with all the processes and the steps that must be taken to be able to have one. But this procedure is very safe.
Tips for Staying Calm When You Visit the Dentist
Staying calm is one of the best ways to be able to deal with the fears of being in a dental clinic. This is something that you need to master because dental visit must be a regular thing. If you are having a hard time staying calm, here are some of the tips that you can consider whenever you are visiting the dentist:
- Tell the Dentist About Your Fears
It wouldn’t hurt to be real and to be honest. This is why you have to talk to your dentist about your fears before you go on with any procedure. This kind of conversation can help you relieve yourself. Aside from that, the dentist can help you understand the procedure. Proper understanding of the things that will take place will help you conquer your fears. You will be able to eliminate unnecessary beliefs and myths that you have in mind. Sometimes, there are some irrational thoughts that just need to be addressed for you to be able to deal with your fears.
- Practice Relaxed Breathing Techniques and Meditation
Meditation has always worked not only in dental treatments but also in other procedures. While you are in the waiting room, you can close your eyes, inhale and then exhale. You can also wear your earphones and listen to calming music while you meditate. This can help calm your mind and your whole system. This way, you do not have to deal with panic and anxiety attacks while you are in the dentist’s office.
- Listen to Your Favorite Music
Music is a good element that can help you deal with anxiety. While you are on your way to the dental clinic, you can listen to your favorite music. This is a good distraction that can help you relieve anxiety. It will provide you with a better mindset and you will feel happier. This is because most people are able to improve their mood whenever they listen to music. This is also the same effect that you will be able to get when you do it while you are on your way to the dentist.
- Have a Distraction
The fear of dental treatment may stay in your mind until you were able to get through the procedure. However, you can always create a healthy distraction. You can do a lot of things while you are waiting for your turn. You can read a magazine, watch a video from your phone, or just do something that is fun. Do not focus on the fear and the anxiety. You have to divert your attention into something that will make you feel better.
- Talk to the Dentist About Stopping if You’re Uncomfortable
While the procedure is going on, you can always communicate with your dentist. When you are already feeling anxious and uncomfortable, you can ask the dentist to stop. This way, you will be able to compose yourself before they continue. Proper communication with the dentist will save you from becoming more fearful.
Meditation is one of the most powerful means to deal with pain and with anxiety. People who meditate regularly are known to be calmer and more relaxed. Anxiety is something that we may deal with due to stress. If you cannot eliminate it, you should learn how to deal with it.