Good oral hygiene habits start with the basics; proper brushing and flossing, using a good mouthwash, eating healthy foods and avoiding habits that can cause dental problems, such as smoking tobacco or using your teeth to open things (like ripping price tags off of new clothes with your teeth)!
But just as important as maintaining good daily habits isvisiting your dentist for scheduled teeth cleanings and when you have unforeseen tooth problems like an ongoing toothache or a chipped tooth. Little problems ignored can turn into big problems later. If you are avoiding your dentist at all cost because of dental phobia, here are some things you can do to help you face your dentist when the time comes.
Let the truth be known: When you call the dental office to schedule a visit, let the staff know how you feel in advance. They will let your dentist know that you are suffering from dental anxiety and finding it difficult and terrifying to come in. We will do everything we can to make your visit as comfortable as possible and stay in communication with you and your needs.
Talk to your dentist: your dentist or hygienist is happy to alleviate your fears by letting you know what they are about to do beforehand, giving you a heads up so you know what to expect. You can work out a signal like raising your hand to let them know to stop momentarily to let you rinse your mouth or just take a breather.
You and your dentist can determine the best sedation: this will help keep you pain-free during your treatment to keep you comfortable and lessen your anxiety.
Distract yourself: bringing your favorite music and ear buds to listen to will help calm your mind and help you feel more at home. You can also visualize your happy place and go there in your mind. Taking slow, deep breaths also helps to slow the heart rate and relax your muscles.
Finally, have someone you trust accompany you at your visit to help you relax while you wait, and knowing they will be a comfort driving you home after the treatment will be a great comfort for you.
Please let us know how we can help your visit be as anxiety-free as possible while we help you keep your smile healthy and bright!