Communication is key! Choose a dentist that you can communicate well with, who listens to your needs and understands your anxiety. Being able to speak openly with your dentist is important. Make sure you express your concerns to your dentist and let them know what makes you anxious during your dental visits.
Plug in your headphones and listen to music during your visit. This is a great idea if the sounds of the dental practice cause you anxiety. Load up a playlist with your favourite tunes and escape into your music while your dentist does their thing. Maybe avoid anything that makes you want to dance though so we don’t bust your tooth as you bust a move in the chair.
Bring along a buddy that can support you. Our team understand that the dentist can be overwhelming and that even having someone familiar in the room with you can help you feel at ease.
Talk to your dentist about what is involved with your treatment. If the fear of the unknown makes you anxious, ask your dentist to run through their plan for your visit. Our dentists are no Richie Benaud, but you can also ask them to give you commentary during your treatment. That way you’ll know what they are doing and why they are doing it.
Essential oils and homeopathic elixirs can assist in reducing anxiety. Lavender, Bergamot oil, or ylang-ylang fragrant oils are just some examples of essential oils that may help reduce your anxiety. Certain herbal treatments such as Chamomile, Passion Flower and Valerian may also have the same effect. It’s important to consult your doctor about herbal medicines before trying any of these options.
If your dental anxiety is severe, sedation dentistry (commonly known as sleep dentistry) may be an option for you. You’ll need to consult with your dentist first about the right sedation type for you. Your dentist may even be able to perform more treatment whilst you are sedated.
The best way to overcome your anxiety is to prevent the need for dental treatment in the first place. Regular dental visits will actually reduce your dental anxiety in the long term as you continue to develop trust with your dentist and you prevent the need for more complex treatment. Making sure you are maintaining a good oral health routine and taking care of your teeth may also reduce your time spent at the dentist.
Everyone is different and we all handle anxiety differently. These are just some of the more common ways to help you feel comfortable at the dentist. If these strategies don’t work for you, consult with your local Maven dentist about some alternatives for your unique needs.
Whilst research teams around the globe are working tirelessly to develop a vaccine for COVID-19 there is no clear end to this global pandemic just yet. Your oral health is linked to your overall wellness and, although it may be easy to overlook in these uncertain times, it shouldn’t be ignored. As the virus continues to be part of our society your dental visits may look a little different.