The blinding light is overhead. The nauseating sounds are pounding in your head. Your stomach is in knots. You feel like you are floating and the room is spinning. And then an indistinct man wearing a surgical mask brings a metal tool toward you, closer – and closer. Just when the seemingly enormous metal tool is an inch away from your mouth, you wake up in a cold sweat. … Yup. If the thought of visiting the dentist gives you nightmares, you have dental office anxiety. If you choose the best Oakland County dentists, however, you can overcome dental office anxiety and perhaps even realize that there was nothing to fear but fear itself.
Top Ways to Overcome Dental Office Anxiety
- Identify and face your fears.
Truly, why are you afraid? Pain? Gagging? The smells? The sounds? Identify what makes you nervous – and then try to see it in a different light. For example, you can think of the sounds as funny or soothing as opposed to scary. (“It’s like mowing the lawn on a beautiful summer day.”)
At the same time, understand that some dental office anxiety is normal. Just don’t let it keep you away.
- Try tried and true tricks.
- Schedule an ideal time.
Everyone is different in this case, so think about your past appointments. When were you most nervous and when were you most relaxed? Set your appointments for a time of the day when you would feel most at ease.
- Breathe through your nose.
Breathing through your nose is a simple way to reduce or overcome dental office anxiety. In any situation, focusing on your breathing is a mindfulness technique, but at the dentist, you would also reduce how much you taste and feel.
- Watch TV.
We bet you never heard that recommendation from your parents when you were younger, but you’re getting it from us now. The best Oakland County dentists will create a soothing atmosphere, and that will include distracting nervous patients from focusing on the procedures.
By the way, that’s also why they talk to you during the procedure. (Don’t worry. We are fluent in mumbling.)
- Lift a leg.
If you specifically fear gagging, try raising one leg during the routine. You will find that your attention has been diverted from what is going on in your mouth to how to find the strength to keep that leg raised. (Oh and look at that! You might even be able to reduce your time at the gym today.)
- Laugh a little beforehand.
If you made the time to laugh beforehand, such as by watching a funny movie or chatting with a funny friend, you will find yourself relaxed and happier before your visit.
- Bring someone with you.
Overthinking the dental office visit will intensify your anxiety. For that reason, consider asking that funny friend or someone else to come with you. Talking with that person will give you something else to think about, and he or she can drive in case you need sedation.
- Ask your dentist if sedation is right for you.
Along those lines, if you try all these methods and still cannot overcome dental office anxiety, ask your dentist if any sedation options are right for you.
- Find the best Oakland County dentists.
To find the best Oakland County dentists, ask for recommendations and research reviews online. Explore their education and experience level.
It’s undeniable: Some dentists simply make you feel more at ease than others. Consider it a natural talent that is crucial to helping you overcome dental office anxiety.
Ask Us for Additional Suggestions to Calm Dental Office Anxiety
One of our best tips is this: Know that you are not alone. There is no shame in being afraid or nervous. The best Oakland County dentists will have helped patients suffering from anxiety more times than you can imagine.
We want you to walk out of our office with a healthy smile, and you can’t do that if your fear keeps you from walking into the office. When you visit us, tell us what makes you anxious. We’ll do our best to help you stay relaxed. Browse through our blog page for additional tips, or you may contact us through our website or by phone.
With the right combination of communication, trust and our professional and gentle techniques, Fisher Pointe Dental can work together with you to calm your fears.