Visiting the dentist is a trial for some people due to mounting anxiety from odontophobia. Although this fear is hard to work through, it is important to make sure you are taking care of your oral health. You need to visit the dentist twice a year for regular cleanings and routine checks for tooth decay. In order to do this while successfully managing your odontophobia, you need to create a strategy. Your dentist will work with you to help you achieve optimal oral health. Here are three ways to successfully manage your fear of the dentist.
Block out worrisome noises with earplugs or headphones.
The whir of the drill and the splashing of water is enough to get your pulse racing and anxiety levels up. In order to manage the sounds that set you off, you need to find a way to block them out or to distract yourself. Think about the stimuli that make you nervous, then it will become easy to find ways to block them out. You can wear earplugs or noise canceling headphones if sounds makes you nervous. If you need further distraction, you can wear headphones and listen to an audiobook or your favorite playlist.
Schedule your appointments for optimal times.
When you have odontophobia, it is important to set your appointment well ahead of time. That way you do not back out of your much needed appointment with your dentist. You can also work with your dentist to manage other factors of your appointment. For example, you can come in on a lunch hour or during another time when there are not a lot of other patients. You can also ask for extraneous lights to be dimmed to help you feel more comfortable. Let your dentist be a key player in making your plans. He wants you to be comfortable and healthy.
Use sedation dentistry to make anxiety disappear.
If your odontophobia is unbearable, then you may want to consider sedation dentistry at a place like Mill Creek Family Dental. The dentist uses medication to help you relax. This might be in the form of pills, gas, or intravenous drugs. From there, you will either be very relaxed or enter a twilight state. You are unaware of the procedures taking place, which makes this ideal if you need to go through more involved dental procedures, such as a root canal. You should plan to have a friend or family member drive you home after undergoing sedation dentistry.