WHAT MAKES A DENTAL VISITa feared chore? Why do thoughts of reclining plastic chairs and tiny handheld mirrors give some people the chills? Setting aside the high pitched, nails-on-chalkboard-sound one hears during a cleaning, what else do people worry about? Research shows that 10-20% of people avoid the dentist because of fear or anxiety, and 5-10% of people have an actual “dental phobia”—meaning they’ll avoid a visit to the dentist at just about any cost. Some people who have extreme dental anxiety have good reasons.
Perhaps it has come from a previous negative experience with a procedure or dentist. Or maybe you just don’t like having the dentist in such close proximity to your face. Some people feel anxiety over the lack of control they have while they’re lying in the chair. WebMD talks about some ways to help this kind of anxiety.
Simply put, the best way to alleviate your fears is to tell Dr. Michel, or a team member, about your worries. 75% of dental patients have some level of fear—it’s very common so you don’t need to feel alone. Our goal here at our practice isn’t to scare patients—it’s to help keep them healthy and strong! So, if you hate tight spaces or want to understand what we’re doing in your mouth, it’s OK to let us know. In fact, we WANT you to tell us. It helps us help you.
We’re happy to explain each dental tool before we use it, and give you extra chances to swish. We can even try to stop asking you questions while you have all that stuff in your mouth if it helps!
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