Does the sight of a dental chair fill you with dread? If the sound of the drill, the smell of fluoride, or those little clip bibs makes your blood pressure rise, you may suffer from dental anxiety. This fear of the dental treatment may have been caused by early painful dental visits or simply the experiences of others who have horror stories from toothaches, root canals, or fillings gone awry. Whatever the cause, the results can be an aversion to visiting the dentist that can have a major impact on your health. Preventative care for your teeth does more than simply give you a great smile. Healthy, strong teeth are essential for proper speech and eating. When your teeth start to decay due to lack of care, mouth pain can prove excruciating and the problems can be very expensive to fix.
In addition, the loss of your teeth can make it impossible for you to eat all the foods you love, especially healthful crisp vegetables. Malnutrition can result from lost teeth, leading to a whole host of diseases that impact your quality of life. Unhealthy teeth and gums can also wreak havoc on your financial wellbeing. A beautiful smile is an unstated prerequisite for most good paying jobs. Interviewers often write off applicants who have decaying or discolored teeth before even hearing about their abilities or skill sets. In addition, the problems that arise from a lack of preventative care at the dentist can pile up major dental and medical bills in the future.
Today’s dentists understand that dental anxiety is very common. Most are very willing to help you overcome your fears to get the care you need for your teeth. Some dental practices are specifically geared toward this end with the use of nitrous oxide, lasers, and other high tech anxiety relievers. Choosing a ‘gentle’ dentist or pain-free dentistry practice can go a long way toward restoring your trust in tooth professionals. However, just getting in the door can be a major ordeal, depending on your level of anxiety. It is a good idea to schedule a trip to the office with a friend where you are not receiving a treatment or exam of any kind. Call up the dental practice and ask if you may tour the office.
Seeing how the dentist and hygienists treat the patients can help to calm your anxiety. Discussing your fears with you dental care professional will enable them to assist you through the process. There is no need for embarrassment because dental dread is extremely common.