How Do Dentists Deal With Nervous Patients?
Being nervous of the dentist is more common than you might think, and it’s something we deal with almost on a daily basis here at our London dental practice. Here’s how we deal with dental anxiety.
Understanding the reason
In our experience, everyone is anxious about a trip to the dentists to some degree – but the cause behind it can vary. Sometimes it’s from having a negative experience in the past; sometimes it’s because poor oral hygiene has left the patient feeling self-conscious; and sometimes it’s a ‘fear of the unknown’, firstly with what could be wrong with your mouth, teeth and gums and secondly with what treatment, aftercare and costs might be involved.
Working through anxiety
The first step to dealing with your dental worries is recognising that you’re anxious. Once you’ve taken this step, you’re in a good position to then deal with the way you feel. Maybe listening to music during the procedure will help. Or, having a friend along for moral support can settle nerves. Your dentist might talk you through the treatment as it’s happening too, so you’re more aware of what’s going on at the time.
Extreme dental anxiety
In some cases, sedation can be used to help put the patient in a relaxed state where they’re still conscious, but not as aware about what’s going on. Dental sedation is safe and the effects wear off in a matter of hours. You’ll be carefully monitored if you choose to have this treatment.
One of the best ways to overcome dental anxiety is through building a relationship with your dentist where you can freely talk about your concerns, and in turn they can discuss your treatments with you. Familiarising yourself with the practice – and processes – can also help. It’s actually one of the reasons we encourage patients to join as children, since growing up with regular check-ups can make a trip to the dentists feel second nature.
Another great tip is to book your treatment when the dental practice is at its quietest, like first thing in the morning. Having fewer people around and less hustle and bustle can help you to feel that there’s more one-to-one support, though alternatively, some patients find that a busy dental practice can actually take their mind off things.
Talk to us
We’d like to help look after the health of your mouth, teeth and gums. If dental anxiety is getting in the way of your oral health, talk to us to see how we could help. Our friendly London dental practice on 19 Wimpole Street, is just a call away.