Avoiding the Dentist Because of Fear or Anxiety - image

Many people look forward to a trip to a dental appointment with varying degrees of dread and foreboding. Whilst most dental procedures are not painful, there’s something about the whole process that drills down into our psyches.

For most, it is a case of a little fear and anxiety that has to be endured – our stiff upper lips will see us through. For others, however, the thought of a visit to the dentist fills them with uncontrollable terror.

Those with a dental phobia will do just about anything to avoid a dental appointment. A phobia goes far beyond the normal fear or anxiety that most of us experience in our everyday lives. It is an intense and often unreasonable fear that can be linked to any activity, object or situation.

People who have dental anxiety or phobia will often put off going to the dentist for years and years to the detriment of their own oral hygiene.

Real dental anxiety and phobia is actually fairly common – research shows that between 9 and 15% (30-40 million) Americans have avoided the dentist because of their anxiety or fear. And 36% of people who answered a British Health Foundation Survey said they didn’t see dentists on a regular basis because they were afraid.

For those with a dental anxiety, as the time for the appointment approaches, so their disquiet grows. Dental phobia goes one step further, the worries and fears snowball out of all proportion to reality and the person will feel an intense fear or dread.

Dental anxiety and phobias can develop for a number of reasons. According to a survey, 6% of people who had not been to a dentist for 12 months stated fear of pain as a reason. This fear of pain is more common in people over the age of 24 and may have some connection with previous visits to the dentist when younger.

Many who develop a fear or phobia speak of feelings of helplessness as well as a worry over loss of control. Sitting in a dentist’s chair, unsure of whether something is going to hurt or not, can trigger a large amount of anxiety.

For some people, there is also a level of embarrassment particularly if they are very self-conscious. A dentist has to work in close proximity to the patient and for some this is problematic.

Of course, not wanting to visit a dentist can also be influenced by negative past experiences. If a person has suffered pain or discomfort when visiting a dentist they are unlikely to look forward to returning.

Nowadays, many dentists are trained to deal with apprehensive or fearful patients. A dental phobia certified centre like Sameday Teeth Suite in the Midlands has trained staff who can help you feel more comfortable and relaxed when going for a dental treatment.

IV (intravenous) sedation is available so you can feel totally relaxed during the procedure and won’t even remember the treatment.

Sedation is a popular service favoured for long treatments such as implants, bridges, extractions and all on 4 procedures.

If you have avoided dentists for too long and have missing teeth that needs to be replaced then you should contact one of our friendly front desk members on 0115 8320205 and ask more about our sedation service. We can book a free consultation with a sympathetic professional at our Sameday Teeth Suite in Leicester, Nottingham and Loughborough. You will be able to come to the clinic and have a chat with one of our consultants and look at ways in which you can overcome your fears, with no obligation to go ahead with any treatments.

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