Do you experience anxiety before going to the dentist? We understand that a dental office may not be your favorite place to be, but we want you to feel as comfortable as possible during your visit to ours. We believe in getting to know our patients and coming up with the best solutions to improve their overall comfort during exams and treatments. While it may seem like overcoming dental anxiety is a mountainous feat, there are several techniques you can try to make your dentist visit bearable and possibly even a calm and relaxing experience.
It is not uncommon for patients to experience feelings of anxiety before scheduling an appointment, upon arriving at our office, or while awaiting treatment. The degree to which a person experiences anxiety can vary. However, the main concern is when these feelings cause patients to delay dental procedures and routine examinations, resulting in tooth decay and further complications.
Tips to Overcome Anxiety
There are some simple steps a patient can take to help deal with minor dental anxiety:
- Be mindful of what you eat and drink – foods and beverages that contain caffeine or have a high sugar content will not help anxiety. It is best to eat a protein filled meal to help calm your system.
- Listen to music – bring your favorite headphones and create a calming playlist of your favorite songs to drown out the noises of the office.
- Use breathing techniques – it is best to breathe deeply and slowly during treatments. When nervous, patients have a tendency to hold their breath slightly, which can increase anxiety.
If you feel that you suffer from an extreme form of dental anxiety, you may be a candidate for sedation dentistry. Sedation dentistry uses medication to help patients relax during procedures. Our office uses oral sedation, or conscious sedation, which involves taking a pill prior to a procedure. The benefit of this method is that it allows the patient to achieve total relaxation while remaining awake during the procedure.
If you live in the Ashburn, VA area and have not scheduled a cleaning in some time or are due for a dental treatment, put your fears aside, pick up the phone, and call our office to schedule your next appointment. If you are struggling with dental anxiety, we encourage you to speak to one of our wonderful staff members who will further assist you by discussing the options that may be available. We hope to see you soon!