REDUCING DENTAL FEAR AND ANXIETY IN PATIENTS

DENTAL_FOBIA

What is anxiety? 

Anxiety is an emotion characterized by feelings of tension, worried thoughts or physical changes. Dental anxiety is a term used to describe the feeling of fear or apprehension towards dental care and treatments. It’s normal for anyone to feel anxious about dental procedures – we generally see two types of anxiety; trait anxiety or situational anxiety. With trait anxiety, the patient experiences stress even though there are no specific reasons for it. Situational anxiety is a type of anxiety that occurs during unfamiliar situations or events that make us so nervous that we lose control of our ability to stay calm. Both of which are incredibly common and frequently experienced in dentistry. 

What are the symptoms?

People with dental anxiety may experience one or more of the symptoms below : 

  •  Sweating 
  •  Racing heartbeat 
  •  Low blood pressure 
  •  Heightened emotions during treatment

What are the reasons for anxiety?

The reasons for having anxiety could be a fear of needles, previous bad experiences, unsure of what to expect, the fear of pain or the frequency of your visits to the dentist.  It’s not related to your age, your gender, the number of teeth missing or the reason for your dental visit. It is vital that your dentist tries to alleviate your stress at the earliest opportunity. This will calm the situation and allow you to communicate with them in a more relaxed manner. It is advised that your dentist is made aware of any psychological and physiological problems prior to treatment. One of our primary aims at Sevil Smile Studio is to ensure that we provide a comfortable and relaxed environment throughout your time spent at the clinic.

Here are 10 top tips on how to deal with dental anxiety so you can get the care that you need:

  1. Be informed do your research beforehand helping you remove the fear of the unknown.
  2. Tell your dentist about your anxiety and create a strategy. Some patients feel better if the dentist tells them what is happening at every step of the process. Other patients prefer to have the dentist talk about something other than the work that is done. 
  3. Establish a signal for when you need a break. Let the dentist know if you raise your hand, it means you need them to pause for a minute.
  4. Listen to music, close your eyes, and concentrate on your favourite songs.
  5. Bring a friend. It can help to know you have someone you trust sitting in the waiting room and keeping you calm.
  6. Have something to hold. You may want to hold a worry stone, a stress relief ball or a hand-grip to squeeze during treatment.
  7. Picture yourself somewhere else. Visualisation techniques such as imagining you’re on the beach watching the waves can help relax you.
  8. Silently repeat a mantra. You know how people always say think good thoughts? It’s true. Telling yourself simple mantras like “I am okay” or “I am safe” can help keep you calm.
  9. Consider medication. Before your appointment, call your dentist about your fears and discuss whether you should take a prescription. Make sure you follow your dentist’s instructions regarding any medication.
  10. Consider sedation dentistry. In extreme cases, there are some patients whose anxiety has reached the point of becoming a phobia. In these cases, talk to your dentist about whether anaesthesia may be an option.

How do we manage dental anxiety at Sevil Smile Studio? 

At Sevil Smile Studio, we believe in care and trust-building. A good relationship between patient and dentist is crucial for managing anxiety. From the moment you step into the clinic you will feel taken care of, our aim is to ensure that you feel at home during your time in Turkey. We endeavor to provide you with as much information as possible about your treatment plan so you are prepared in advance. This should help alleviate any anxiety of the unknown. During the first consultation, we take the time to explain the dental procedures involved, we answer any questions and address any possible concerns you may have and discuss your overall expectations. Once the various treatment options have been explained, you will have the opportunity to select the dental treatment best suited to you. 

At Sevil Smile Studio, we use the latest technology in smile design and provide pain-free dental treatments in a relaxed and friendly environment. We aim to remove the fear out of dental procedures and create a calmer and less stressful experience.  

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