For some adults, living with dental fear or dental phobia prevents them from receiving proper dental care. Even though they know that regular exams and cleanings are an essential part of good oral hygiene, their fears keep them out of the dental chair until a severe dental issue or dental emergency forces them into the dentist’s office. When the dental problems have become that great, treatments are often lengthy and complicated, and this, unfortunately, justifies the patient’s feelings of fear and anxiety. It’s a discouraging cycle, but possible to prevent with patience and understanding.
A common problem
Dental fear is a common problem with an estimated 75% of American adults experience some level of dental fear and anxiety. Of that 75%, approximately 5-10% have a dental phobia. Dental phobia fills patients with so much fear they don’t seek dental care unless an emergency need arises.
Dentistry measures that break the cycle
Helping patients avoid dental problems in the first place can shorten the time they need to spend in the chair, which can reduce their fear and anxiety. Dental anxiety can be difficult to control for many patients, and that’s why dental offices take measure to reduce treatment time and enhance comfort for their patients. To gain a comprehensive understanding of their patient’s fears, dentists encourage them to express their concerns before any dental procedure. A caring dentist explains what patients can expect and creates a treatment plan that keeps the patient comfortable throughout the process. Many dentists even perform initial consultations in an office setting instead of the dental chair to help their patients communicate in a less clinical setting.
For those individuals who require more than communication and comfortable surroundings, many dental offices, including Creative Dental, offer different levels of sedation dentistry. When traditional numbing agents in the treatment area aren’t enough to alleviate fears, dentists may give patients oral sedatives before the procedure or enlist a qualified anesthetist to administer IV sedation. With sedation dentistry, patients often have no memory of the procedure, and this helps eliminate the fear of future appointments.
Don’t let past unpleasant dental experiences keep you from having a healthy, stunning smile any longer. Today’s dental offices have been designed with patient comfort in mind, and the best dentists have a commitment to helping formerly fearful patients experience relaxed, comfortable dental visits. Learn more about Creative Dental’s sedation dentistry options and ask how we can alleviate dental fear and anxiety by contacting our offices today.