Many people have a fear of going to the dentist. This can sometimes be the result of a negative experience in the past, perhaps something that happened in childhood. Some people just don’t like the sounds and smells you get in a dental surgery and others may be concerned about a problem they are having e.g. toothache, bleeding gums, etc. and are worried that treatment may be painful.

Thankfully, due to the rapid improvements in dental techniques and equipment, a trip to the dentist is very different today compared to even a decade ago.  Micro-fine, pain-free sedation injections, laser drills and faster and less invasive treatments make a visit to the dentist much more pleasant. However, even with the latest advances in technology, some individuals will still find the whole process very stressful.  There are some things you can try to help minimise your anxiety.

Ways to help reduce dental anxiety

  1. Probably the most important thing is to choose a good dentist who is sympathetic to your problem. A good dentist will be calm and gentle and will want to make the experience as pleasant as possible for you. They will spend time talking with you, explaining any new procedures. This will take away the anxiety of not knowing what is happening and why.
  2. Arrange your dental visit for a time that it is likely to be quiet. You may have to call your particular practice to find out when this is. An early appointment is usually best for ‘getting it over and done with quickly’ instead of waiting all day and getting more and more anxious.
  3. Wear earphones and listen to music while you are undergoing treatment. This can help drown out any unpleasant noises from the drill and other dental equipment.
  4. Use mindfulness, meditation or deep breathing to help calm you down before your appointment.
  5. Bring along a friend or family member to offer emotional support or to distract you while waiting for your appointment.
  6. In extreme cases, some dentists will use gentle sedation to relax you so that essential treatment can be carried out.
  7. Gradual exposure is another technique that is used with people who have more extreme anxiety. This begins with simple, short, non-invasive appointments to build trust and gradually works up over time until more involved procedures are possible.

The fear of going to the dentist is a real and genuine concern for many people. However, with the right approach and support, it is possible to overcome this anxiety. Dentists and patients should work together to create a comfortable and trusting environment. This is important because regular dental care is essential for maintaining good oral health and overall well-being.

Hope Park Dental provides a relaxed and calm environment where you and your family are warmly welcomed. Get in touch to find out more about our wide range of dental services.