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How do you know if you have dental anxiety?

by Micheal Danye

Are you scared of seeing a dentist and avoid any dental treatment or care? If yes, then you may have dental anxiety. People with such phobia increase their dental problems and complicate any dental procedures, causing a lot of stress for a dentist and their family and friends.

These patients aggravate their problem and pain by assuming that something unfortunate and dreadful will happen to them during their dental treatment. It is imperative to identify such patients and address their concerns at the earliest.

Things like needles, drills or general dental settings can trigger dental anxiety. People with certain mental health conditions, general anxiety, bipolar disorder, or a history of head and neck trauma are more vulnerable to dental anxiety. 

Learn more about dental anxiety here dentist Ottawa.

What are the signs of dental anxiety?

The signs and symptoms of dental anxiety are similar to general anxiety. Patients of dental anxiety will show the following signs:

  • Low blood pressure
  • Sweating
  • Palpitations
  • Panic and crying
  • Abnormal laughing to hide their fear
  • Use different means to avoid dental treatments

What causes dental anxiety?

  • General anxiety disorder
  • Trauma to head and neck in the past
  • Dental trauma in the past
  • A relative or close one’s dental experience
  • Trust issues

Dental anxiety and fear can adversely affect your oral and overall health in the long run. Regular dental checkups help you maintain your dental health. Avoiding these checkups or any dental treatment can worsen your existing dental problems, resulting in complex and emergency treatments. Untreated dental issues have been linked to heart related complications.

How can you manage or treat dental anxiety?

First of all, let your dentist know that you fear dental checkups and treatment. Discuss the causes and concern and tell your dentist about your triggers. It will help your dentist understand the underlying problems and provide you with comprehensive treatment for your anxiety. You can also do the following to manage your fear:

  • Meditate
  • Do breathing exercises
  • Do something you enjoy. Listen to music, play a sport, cook or read a book
  • Take help from a psychologist or therapist
  • Practice guided imagery techniques

Poor dental service and faulty diagnosis and treatment in the past can cause dental anxiety and phobia. Therefore, you should consult dental clinics who can offer varied services and address all your issues like Trillium Dental in Ottawa.

A dental clinic and all its staffs can also play a significant role in managing dental anxiety. They are responsible for creating a friendly and stress-free ambience in the dental clinic. Their cordial behaviour towards the patient can help them trust the process and treatment.

Electronic anaesthesia, computer-assisted relaxation learning techniques, computer-controlled dental-injection and other technological advancements in dental therapy also alleviate anxiety in many patients.

Dentists recommend not to ignore signs of anxiety and address them as soon as possible to avoid getting into severe dental complications. Good oral health is imperative to your overall well-being.

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