When one thinks of their favorite things to do, going to a dentist for a check-up, let alone oral surgery, isn’t going to be at the top of that list. We’ll take a gander and say it’s going to be toward the bottom of most people’s lists. If you fall within the 24 percent of the population that feel anxious or fearful of going to the dentist, we are here to help!
There is a stark difference between fear and phobia. Fearing an upcoming dental visit can imbue an individual with feelings of nervousness and of being uncomfortable. A phobia is under the umbrella of anxiety disorders and is characterized by the irrational fear of something.
Dentophobia: The Fear of Dentists
Dentophobia, sometimes referred to as odontophobia, is the irrational fear of the dentist. Specific phobias affect about 12.5 percent of adults in America. Reasons for dentophobia can include:
- Negative past experiences
- Dental tool noises
- Dental procedure(s) costs
- Oral health concerns
What To Do About Dentophobia
It’s normal to feel a little nervous about going in for a dental procedure! The best way to combat being fearful of the dentist is by seeing a dentist. Build a support team that includes family, friends, and the office staff at the dental office. Communicate feelings of unease and concerns to the dentist and staff.
WebMD compiled a helpful list of things one can do to alleviate the fear of a dental visit. Ways to take charge of oral health include:
- Inviting a close friend or family member for support
- Find a support forum online
- Have a distraction planned, like listen to music during the oral procedure
- Practice relaxation in the dental chair (deep breathing is fantastic means of slowing your heartbeat)
- If exhibiting increased stress or anxiety, don’t be shy about seeing a therapist.
In addition to the above-listed ideas, speak to Dr. Konig or a member of our office staff about our sedation dentistry to ease feelings of worry. We offer sedation in the form of:
- Pills – oral sedatives
- IV sedation (administered by an anesthesiologist)
- Nitrous oxide (laughing gas)
To learn more about our sedation dentistry or other dental services we provide, call us at 713-668-2289 or fill out our contact form to request a consultation with Dr. Konig. We are pleased to support our clients in attaining their dental and oral goals. Our practice is proud to serve Houston, TX, and the surrounding areas.