Are You Afraid of the Dentist?

For many people the thought of going to the dentist is anxiety provoking. Here are six tips that can help squelch your fear of the dentist:

  1. Meet the dentist or periodontist first for a consultation, to discuss your needs and the way the treatment will be performed. This way you can feel comfortable, confident, and reassured that you will be in good hands. If not possible, move on to another professional.
  2. You can request to speak to other patients of the practice to see what their experiences have been. Be sure to call more than one patient to verify consistency. Our practice of new periodontal patients have this opportunity available to them at their first visit and all the information is kept confidential.
  3. Ask the dentist or periodontist if you could have anti-anxiety medication prior to your visit. You may have to be driven or accompanied to the office if given oral medicines. You could also ask about having nitrous oxide (laughing gas) for the visit as well. In this case, you can drive yourself.
  4. Practice breathing and relaxation techniques while at the dentist or periodontist's office.
  5. Bring an mp3 player, or have music playing to relax you while having the dental work. This really helps.
  6. Once you have done your research on the dentist or periodontist you have chosen, trust your decision. Try not to consult a million other people because ultimately you might develop even more anxiety.

Do you have anxiety about getting oral exams? How do you cope?

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