Three Tips to Help Conquer Your Fear of the Dentist


Fear of dentists is a much more common phobia than people believe. In fact, between 30 to 40 million Americans will avoid going to a family dentist office at all costs because they’re so anxious and nervous about it. According to one survey, 36% of people who failed to get their regular dental cleanings said they didn’t go to their local dentist because they had a phobia.

Though it’s tough, it’s more than possible to conquer this fear. Here are a few tips to help.

Have the Dentist Explain What’s Going On.

For many, the root cause of a dentist office phobia is a basic lack of understanding. Have your dentist articulately explain each of the different dental exams they’ll do before you sit down, detailing what they’re going to do, and why they’re going to do that. After all, you have a right to know what they’re doing to you.

Use Relaxation Techniques to Calm Down.

When you’re in the dentist office and start to feel nervous, anxious, or panicky, try some relaxation techniques before — or even during — your appointment, like deep breathing and meditation. You could also ask your dentist to play some soothing music to help you relax, too.

Talk to the Dentist About Stopping.

Having a safety net is always reassuring. Though for many it’s unnecessary, the act of having one makes them feel safer, and more likely to accomplish a task. That being said, talk to your dentist about stopping if you feel uncomfortable. Knowing that you can always walk away will help keep you from panicking. Come up with a signal that will let them know you need to take a break from the appointment to calm yourself.

Despite how you may feel, dentist offices aren’t dungeons. They’re safe, welcoming places that are looking out for your best interests. With these tips, you’ll hopefully be able to go to a dentist office and get the care you need without getting anxious.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the comments. Links like this.

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