What do you think is the reason why people avoid getting dental care? The common denominator they all share is fear. Many of them experience anxiety and tension just even thinking about seeing their dentist.
Surveys show that the two most common reasons for dental fear are embarrassment and helplessness. People feel ashamed to show their teeth especially if they haven’t been diligent in their oral care routine. Having someone peer inside their mouth also makes them feel anxious and uncomfortable.
Another reason that stops them from visiting their dentist is helplessness. They don’t like the idea of sitting in a dental chair for hours and not being able to move. The unpredictability of the procedure and the outcome is another reason that triggers their anxiety and causes them to panic.
Thankfully, fear of the dentist can be controlled. The first thing you need to do is to find a reliable, honest, and experienced dentist. When you trust your dentist you’ll likely show up.
Dentists with years of experience have a way of making you feel comfortable and relaxed. It also helps to share your fears. Let your dentist know what worries you so your dentist can make the necessary adjustments.
When people are nervous they tend to hold their breath. Doing so will lessen the oxygen level in your body and cause you to panic. Instead, observe regular slow breathing. Meditation also helps you relax.
Knowing what to expect will significantly reduce your fears. If this is your first time to visit your dentist or if you can no longer recall what happened during your last dental visit, this post will refresh your memory. The more you know the less scared you’ll be.
#1 Health History
Dental visits consist of two parts – an exam and professional teeth cleaning. A dental exam comes first. In this part, your dentist will obtain a full health history through a series of questions. You will be asked about your current health status. Answer the questions honestly. If you attempt to lie, it will backfire on you. You will also be asked when you last had your mouth checked.
#2 Full Examination
After your interview, your dentist will then proceed to examine your mouth including your teeth, gums, and oral tissues to look for signs of oral problems. The goal of all dentists is to maintain good oral health. They offer preventive dental care services to keep your mouth healthy.
If you manifest signs of oral disease they will identify the problem, come up with a diagnosis and then customize a treatment plan for you. The plan is based on your needs, lifestyle, budget, and preference. The advantage of regular dental visits is that the problem gets detected and treated early before it worsens.
#3 Professional Teeth Cleaning
The second part of your checkup is cleaning. You can have your teeth cleaned by a dental hygienist or a dentist. They use special instruments to scrape away plaque and hardened tartar from the surface of your teeth and from the gumline. Remember that tartar can destroy both your teeth and gums. Remember, regular brushing and flossing cannot remove tartar once it has calcified. After removing tartar, your dentist will polish your teeth.
Not all patients are required to get an X-ray of their mouths. Your risk of diseases and your age will determine if you need an X-ray or not. X-rays can reveal impacted teeth, tumors, tooth decay in between teeth, jawbone damage, and abscesses.
If your teeth and gums are healthy you only need to see your dentist once every six months but if you have cavities and if your gums are red and swollen you may need treatments and frequent dental cleanings to restore your oral health.