Dental phobia

Dental phobia  – Fear of the dentist

The fear of visiting the dental surgery is often caused by the one of the most important mechanisms controlling human’s behaviour. It consists in associating certain stimuli –  that is factors  influencing us  with our reaction to them .Simply speaking if we recognize something  as unpleasant then we try to avoid it .This is an automatic mechanism that excludes rational conviction of something  being  worth doing for our own good despite being unpleasant.

Sometimes however a process described by psychologists as ”the error learning” occurs .As a result of it even a neutral and safe situation may create strong fear or even fright . That is exactly what happens in case of dental phobia fueled by totally blown out of proportion fear of visiting dental surgery. A person put in such a situation wants to avoid that kind of experience despite being aware that fear of it is unjustified and irrational.

Experiencing such fear may manifest in various forms from a mild anxiety to a full fright or even panic.

A few ways to make a visit at the dental surgery a pleasant experience:

  • Don’t be afraid to express the fear of the dentist – talk openly about your worries and fears
  • At the beginning of the appointment we will discuss consecutive stages of the treatment. The lack of understanding of what is happening to You while being in a dental chair can be paralyzing.
  • In the course of treatment You will be informed about consecutive actions – participating in making decisions concerning  the treatment process  reduces sense of uncertainty.
  • Remember about modern dental anaesthesia – today’s anaesthetics are much more effective than ever before .The way they are administered is nowadays much more comfortable for the patient.
  • Incredibly thin and flexible needles reduce the sensation of the injection to an almost unnoticeable minimum.
  • Before the treatment commences make sure You have established the system of signals in case you want to pause the procedure – knowing You can control the situation and stop the procedure at any time will make You feel more confident.
  • Bring a your  walkman or mp3 player containing the music that calms You down – You can listen to your favourite music using headphones in the waiting room as well as during the procedures.

 

While waiting for your appointment You can use some relaxing techniques  e.g. recalling  your best holiday memories  could  help You relax and  take your mind off the stressful thoughts thus not associating the dental surgery with the stress.

Remember to schedule your dental appointment sufficiently in advance .Try to choose quiet day free from other duties or any additional stress.

Remember You are not the only one to feel the anxiety when thinking about visiting the dentist. Getting cold feet about that is no reason to feel ashamed or embarrassed.