Do not let fear keep you from getting the dental treatment you need

If you are afraid of the dentist, it might be because you have had unpleasant experiences that made you worry. Maybe one time when the dentist looked away for a second, he left a tooth with a big cavity. Or maybe your child screamed during their first visit and refused to go back.

To get over your fear of going to the dentist, here are some tips:

Think about how much better your dental health would be if you were getting treatment every 6 months instead of every 5 years. You would also be less likely to have cavities and other problems if you got regular visits. Finally, think about what else is more important than teeth — like how much happier and healthier life would be without teeth aches.

Do something different the next time you go to the dentist. Pick a dental practice that is right for you, one that is clean and comfortable. Ask questions during your appointment to put your mind at ease, like asking how long each procedure will take and what types of tools they will use.

Ask the dentist’s office if they have any sedation dentistry options for you. If you are nervous about seeing the dentist, taking a pill, or getting an injection at the office may help you relax enough to get through your appointment without panicking. Seek the help of a friend or family member to go with you if you are nervous. This way you can feel more secure that they will handle any safety issues and will also get your mind off your fear.

Remember that just like getting work done on other parts of your body, fixing your teeth needs to be done at least twice a year, every 6 months.

When it is time for your next visit, think about what is going to prepare you. Find out in advance if the dentist is going to do an X-ray, a root canal, or a crown. And make sure you are aware of how much that cost will be.

Do not feel bad if you cannot get through your visit without feeling scared. It is better to be scared — it means that you’re paying attention and actually listening to what the dentist is saying. When the dentist is done with your appointment, remember to thank them for all their hard work. Always follow up with the dentist in a timely manner.

Always remember that no one is going to hurt you at the dentist’s office. Most dentists are very gentle and understanding. You might be surprised at how easy it is to get all your teeth cleaned, checked, and (if needed) repaired at the dentist’s office.