Does a trip to the dentist send shivers down to your spine?
Here we talk to Dr. Dheeraj Setia, Head of The Dental Roots with an experience of 20 years in the dental industry, for his top tips and treatments for dealing with dental phobia.
Dr. Setia says that when phobia becomes too overwhelming, people avoid visiting the dentist and seeking treatment all together. This behaviour can lead to poor oral health outcomes which have the potential to impact their overall wellness.
People suffering from dental phobia get triggered by the sight of needles, drills, a particular odour, the sound of the instruments or even by any past unpleasant experience in a dental clinic.
Quick tips before your dental appointment:
- Discuss your concerns with the dentist over the phone prior and let them know you are nervous about attending, maybe share what your triggers are so the dentist can prepare accordingly.
- Book your appointment for first thing in the morning, otherwise you will continue to dwell on it for the whole day and let the anxious feelings build.
- Bring someone you trust and who would be a great help at calming you and your thoughts during the appointment.
- Bring your headphones along to the appointment and listen to music, a podcast, or even a meditation app to help you relax in the chair
- Make sure you eat before the appointment. Skipping meals because you are nervous will only make you feel light headed and compound any negative feelings.
- According to Dr Setia, the patient should always be informed, be in control of their procedure and can raise their hand if they would want to take a breath in between the procedure.
- One can also consider the use of nitrous oxide (laughing gas) during procedures.
The team of The Dental Roots understands that undergoing a dental treatment can be stressful for many people but they are happy to walk you through various ways that can make the experience easier.