Dental Anxiety

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Anxiety associated with a visit to the dentist is common and affects 1 in 6 Australian adults1.  And is something that we manage at Dent8 Dental regularly.

At our practice we make your visit as inviting and comfortable as possible with a family run dental surgery that has understanding staff.

 

We take the time to provide you with as much information as you need before you proceed. We encourage you to have a sense of control in your treatment.  This can be from simple acts like, raising your hand to stop work and taking regular breaks.

If you are someone who gets anxious before a dental visit it can help to consider which part of the visit most concerns you.  For a lot of people it is the injection but it may also be a sense of powerlessness or even a certain sound or smell.

If you can tell us what your biggest cause of anxiety is we may be able to avoid it, consider an alternative or try and desensitize you to your fear.

Systematic desensitization is when a patient has a number of positive exposures to something they would normally fear to help alleviate that fear over time1.

Here at Dent8 Dental we have a STA wand that allows us to deliver local anesthetic slowly, precisely and painlessly by a computerized unit, instead of the usual long syringe.

There are also ways you can help to minimize your anxiety.  If possible make your dental visit in the morning to prevent you from worrying all day about your upcoming appointment. And it is best to avoid talking with other friends or colleagues who also get dental anxiety so you don’t worry each other unnecessarily.

The best part of my job is when a patient who came in for the first time with dental anxiety and possibly upset returns for their next appointment happy and smiling in a now familiar and comfortable environment.

References:

  1. Management of fear and anxiety in the dental clinic: a review. JM Armfield, LJ Heaton. Australian Dental Journal 2013: 58: 390-407.
  2. The fearful dental patient: a guide to understanding and managing. Weiner AA. Ames: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011.