How to Cope with Dentophobia

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We know that oral health care such as dental check-ups and cleanings can be beneficial for your overall health and well-being. Unfortunately, when it comes to getting these services done, you can end up asking yourselves too many questions. In the end, you can end up allowing dental phobia to get the best of you.

If you have dental phobia, you most likely ask yourself the following questions: “Will I need anesthesia?” “What if my teeth are too sensitive?” “What if the treatment is painful?” This widespread fear can stem from various bad experiences and worries related to the dentist or dental care and treatments.

Dentophobia is a common form of phobia. Unlike other fears, this one has to do with going to the dentist and being terrified that they will hurt you or cause pain in some way while performing their job as an oral health professional.

Dentophobic people often have dental work done without any problems because it turns out there isn’t anything wrong after all; however once this happens Dentophobes start worrying about future visits where things might not go well.

Considering the importance of oral care to your overall health, your fear of the dentist should not hinder you from getting the oral care and treatment you need. Unfortunately, it’s not always easy for everyone to get the dental care they need. This is especially true among those with dentophobia.

How to Cope with Dental Phobia

While dental phobia can get in the way of you getting the dental care and treatment you need, there are various ways you can cope with the condition. Below are some of the ways you can handle dentophobia:

Treatments

Avoiding the dentist is a mistake that will only hurt you in the long run. When mild fears over seeing dentists come up, just remember to find out if they offer sedation and ask for it. You can also ask your trusted dentist how they can alleviate any worries or anxieties you may have associated with your visit.

If you have a true phobia of dentists then going there will seem easier said than done. Like other fears that are tied to anxiety disorders and panic attacks, you may need some combination therapies or medications in order to overcome them.

Exposure Therapy

Dentophobia is a condition where one has an irrational fear of dentists. Exposure therapy, the most common treatment for this phobia, involves gradually exposing yourself to having your teeth cleaned at first by going every few months until you are no longer fearful of check-ups and repairs.

This type of psychotherapy can be very helpful with treating people who suffer from dental anxiety because they progress through different levels while being treated. Typically, it starts with you just seeing empty chairs where patients sit and you can progres from there.

Medication

Medication won’t cure dentophobia on its own, but certain types of anti-anxiety medications may alleviate symptoms as you work through exposure therapy. These can also ease some physical side effects your phobia causes, such as high blood pressure or panic attacks.

The Bottom Line

It is reassuring to know there is no shortage of ways you can cope with dentophobia. It would also help that you share with your dentist this irrational fear so you will get the help you need. While it will require time and effort, it is possible that you can progress to a point where you will no longer be afraid to get the oral care you need.