Fear of the dentist is not uncommon. Just thinking about a visit to this doctor makes some people’s hearts beat faster!

How to stop being afraid of the dentist in order to take care of the health of your teeth in time?

Good news: by reading this text and being on our page, you have already taken the first step in the fight against your fear!

What is Dentophobia?

Toothache is considered one of the strongest, and it is impossible to cope with it without a doctor. By postponing a visit to the dentist, a person often only worsens the situation.

However, dentophobia should not be confused with anxiety and even anxiety of a person before a visit to the dentist.

Dentophobia or phobia of the dentist is a strong fear of contact with the dentist and the visit to the dental office itself.

The cause of a phobia is usually an emotional upheaval. At the same time, any, even the lightest procedure, causes a subconscious reaction, which manifests itself in somatic disorders, up to loss of consciousness.

Types of dental phobia

There are 3 types of fear of the dentist.

  • Innate fear.

The rarest and most difficult to correct. It is based on a general fear of any medical procedures, including examinations and tests.

  • Acquired fear.

It is observed in most people who have a negative experience of treatment and extraction of teeth. The disorder is treatable, but first you need to understand the causes of the phobia and understand how to overcome the fear of the dentist: on your own or with the help of a psychologist.

  • Imaginary fear.

This type of fear is more common in children. In this case, the person has never been to a doctor, but has invented many horror stories about him.

In adults, an imaginary phobia develops after a long delay in visiting the dentist. However, this problem is the easiest to solve. It is enough to visit a qualified specialist, and the fear will disappear.

Possible reasons for fear of the dentist

The most common reasons for fear of the dentist are:

  • high sensitivity of the oral cavity to any manipulations, which leads to a subconscious expectation of severe pain;
  • recent negative experience;
  • panic attacks in people with hormonal disorders;
  • vomiting reflex when looking at dental instruments;
  • irrational fear of contamination through tools;
  • fear of having to undergo a course of treatment;
  • psychological injury from childhood.

Symptoms of dentophobia

Regardless of the form of dentophobia, its symptoms are practically the same.

The main ones are:

  • reflex muscle tension;
  • increased sweating;
  • acceleration of the pulse when mentioning the clinic or the need to consult a doctor.

Depending on the individual characteristics of the psyche, dilation of the pupils for no apparent reason, slight tremor of the limbs, diarrhea and increased blood pressure may be observed.

Dentophobia can also manifest as difficulty eating or sleeping when a visit to the dentist approaches and can even cause breathing problems before or during the visit.

How to overcome fear of the dentist

Dentophobia belongs to painful conditions. A person is really sick on a physical level. The psychological component causes physiological disorders. It does not matter which form of fear dominates, in any case the main task is to normalize the emotional state.

Fear is a normal reaction to a real or imagined threat, you should not be ashamed of it.

Trying to convince yourself that everything is fine 10 minutes before going to the clinic will lead to an exacerbation of the phobia.

Start preparing for your dental visit at least a week in advance

To understand how to overcome the fear of the dentist, try to analyze your state when you think about visiting the office and find the pain point that causes the appearance of negative emotions.

By understanding where the source of fear lies, you can look for ways to deal with increased anxiety.

Put aside panic thoughts and worst-case scenarios

We recommend imagining a positive result and trying to believe in it. Pleasant light music, a humorous conversation with friends can help to relax.

If the moment when you are sitting in the chair and the dentist is leaning towards you scares you, distract yourself. Solve some logical problem in your head or repeat an obsessive song.

Choose a clinic and a doctor you trust

Choosing a doctor is a very important step. You need a dentist you can trust and who will tell you what procedures you need, what the treatment will be and how long it will take.

Discuss all the nuances with the doctor, including pain relief. An experienced doctor is able to relieve tension, dispel some fears and describe each manipulation in detail.

Awareness and talking to a doctor will help overcome fear.

At the Yarema Dental clinic, the dentist’s initial consultation lasts about an hour. During the appointment, the specialist will perform a photodiagnosis, microscopic examination of the teeth, X-ray examination and surface analysis of the bite and develop a treatment plan. He will also study the medical history in detail and offer an effective rehabilitation plan.

Learn about the experiences of others

You can also be helped by the experience and impressions of other people who visited the clinic before you.

Analyze the consequences of refusing to visit the dentist

If you constantly postpone a visit to the doctor because of fear, you will probably have to undergo a serious and expensive treatment instead of a minor manipulation.

In addition, it is very important to undergo regular professional teeth cleaning to prevent the development of various diseases.

Bring a friend or family member with you to the meeting

The support of someone you trust is always needed, especially in cases where you feel fear.

Consult a psychologist

If it seems impossible to overcome dental phobia on your own, talk to a psychologist about behavioral treatments that can help. Not only your smile, but also your health depends on it!

Come up with a reward for yourself

Practice shows that the promise of a reward for courage works perfectly in most cases, and the age of the patient does not play a role.

Even adults like to treat themselves to a little something after a stressful situation from which they came out with honor.

Reward yourself with a refresher or a visit to the theater or a movie after a visit to the dentist and a small victory over fear.

How to prevent fear of the dentist in children

The sooner you take your child to the dentist, the better.

The first visit to the children’s dentist should be scheduled immediately after the appearance of the first milk tooth, but no later than the first birthday of the baby.

These early visits help children build trust in dentists to avoid future anxiety when they grow up.

If your child is older and hasn’t been to the dentist yet, help them set positive expectations by reading fun books or watching videos about visiting the dentist.

In the event that a child needs to have a cavity in a tooth filled, do not deceive her that nothing will be done to her. Just assure her that the dentist will use special medication that will block the pain. However, avoid using the words “stings” or “needles.”

Allow the child to take a favorite toy with him to the procedure to distract him from worries.

Set your child up with positive thoughts, such as how bright her smile will be after a visit to the doctor, or talk about the reward she can expect after the visit. Praise your son or daughter a lot for their courage during and after the procedure in the dental office.

One of the most effective ways to overcome a fear rooted in the past is to learn how modern dental clinics work.

Doctors at the Yarema Dental clinic offer patients modern and safe painkillers and take care of their psychological comfort.

Regular visits to the dentist will not only help you avoid more serious problems, but will also make it more routine – one that you don’t have to worry about.