Dental anxiety is very real. Don't worry though, we understand and we're here to help. There can be a number of reasons why you feel anxious about a dental appointment. You may have built up a fear of dentists from your past experiences. Perhaps you have a significant procedure booked, such as a root canal. Maybe it's been a while between appointments and you’re worried about the state of your teeth.
We want you to feel as comfortable as possible. Talk to us about how you’re feeling and let us know if it’s more than just the usual few nerves for you. We will do everything we can to make you comfortable.
If in doubt, check it out.
Book an appointment to see a dentist as soon as possible if:
Call us if you’re experiencing pain and need emergency dental care. We’ll get you in to see us fast for an urgent appointment.
Dental anxiety comes in many forms. It can range from feeling nervous and having some physical reactions while preparing to visit the dentist, right through to more severe dental phobia. This may show itself in extreme behaviour to avoiding a dental appointment or noticeable symptoms such as insomnia, nausea and shortness of breath immediately prior to, and during an appointment.
Children can also experience dental anxiety. Physical reactions and emotional distress can make trying to visit the dentist with a child quite challenging.
Past experience at the dentist is a major cause of dental anxiety. Lots of us even say we 'hate' the dentist. Childhood memories of the 'murder house' is often where it starts. Built-up fear can make it hard for some people to relax during an appointment. It’s good to know that dentistry has changed a lot over the years. Current treatments, procedures, equipment and techniques are now relatively painless and fast.
Dental anxiety in children can come more from an irrational fear or just general worries about the experience ahead. Young children haven’t been to the dentist enough to build up an experience-based concerns, but they can develop an intense fear about what will happen, what the surroundings will be like and what the dentist will be like.
Being anxious about visiting the dentist is common and nothing to be ashamed about. We recommend talking about how you’re feeling with your dentist. It's also useful to talk about it with supportive family members and friends. Being prepared and understanding what will happen at an appointment can go a long way to helping your nerves.
Give us a call and we can help you prepare. We also recommend regular visits to your dentist and hygienist as that can help you feel more comfortable. If you wait to visit until you are in pain or have serious dental problems, it can make your anxiety worse. If your dental anxiety is particularly severe, sedation may be an option. Talk to us and we can discuss the options with you.
When you book at one of our dental practices for a treatment and you experience dental anxiety, you want to be reassured about what’s ahead. We get that. It’s useful to have a think about what your dentist will need to know to diagnose and treat you. That way, your appointment will go as smoothly and fast as possible.
Generally your dentist will ask you about your medical history and then thoroughly examine your mouth, teeth, gums, jaw, tongue, throat, sinuses, ears, nose and neck. You may also need an x-ray, depending on what your dentist suspects might be the cause of your problem.
Your dentist will ask you some questions about your teeth and any pain you may have such as:
Think about your answers to these questions before your appointment. Being prepared can speed up the diagnosis.