A dental practice is no different from a hospital in the way that it should care for its patients, with the same amount of professionalism and consideration. Your mouth is a private and personal place, so dentists understand the uncomfortable nature of dentistry. Equally the topic of dentistry can be a sensitive issue, as your smile is a key part of your appearance, and in many ways your identity, so it can be tricky to approach it objectively. Dentists have to address these sensitivities while keeping in mind the best interests of the patient.
Many dental practices will have specific programmes in place to deal with nervous patients, as they understand that many people might simply be afraid of the dentist. This is an extremely common phobia, for many reasons that have been stated. It can also lead back to childhood memories of the dentist, and also perhaps to some poor treatment involving dentistry in the past. However, it is important to remember that dental practices have gone to great lengths in recent years to become more accommodating and comfortable, with a lot more patient centered care. After all, poor treatment and a bad experience will make a practice lose customers very quickly!
How do dental practices deal with nervous patients?
If you are still nervous about the dentist, then you should call ahead to your dental practice and let them know of your situation. Most dental practices will be able to help you straight away and be able to advise you on the best course of action. Many of them will have specific systems in place in order to deal with patients who are anxious about visiting the dentist and some of them may involve some method of sedation during dental work.
Tips if you are nervous about the dentist
If you are nervous about visiting the dentist, then by telling your dentist about your situation you are already on your way to overcoming the problem. By letting people know, specifically your dental practice, it will make your anxiety much easier to deal with, as you know that you will be treated appropriately once you arrive.
Speaking to as many people as possible about the dentist can also help with your nerves, including family and friends. In many cases, simply addressing your anxieties head on can be the hardest part and admitting that you have a phobia can be half of the struggle.
Visiting the dentist without an appointment can also be a huge step in overcoming your fear. This means that you can go in and get a feel for the place and talk to staff about your situation. When you arrive, you can get to know the practice that you will be receiving treatment in, and feel comfortable before you undergo any procedures.
Conscious sedation may also be an option. This is used for when you are undergoing a procedure that you may be anxious about and may need some assistance relaxing. This will be a gentle sedative, either via mask or IV, which will help you relax and feel soothed while you are undergoing the treatment.