Visiting the dentist – There’s no reason to be scared

            A fear of going to the dentist is a common problem faced by both adults and children alike. It is however really important to overcome these fears as poor oral hygiene combined with irregular on no check-ups at all can lead to serious problems like tooth decay, gum disease, loss of teeth and even more serious conditions such as cancer of the mouth. Also known as odontophobia or dentophobia, which are mainly due to anxiety, certain steps can be taken to make going to the dentist a less stressful time.


            What usually begins in childhood, fear of the dentist can be addressed in children using a number of different methods. The first is to start taking your child to the dentist as early as you can. The first trip is needed at about one year old. Children generally are born without fear so the more relaxed the experience is for them the better. Secondly, why not try doing some kind of role-play exercise with your child before they go. You can pretend you are the dentist and let your child lie back in a comfortable chair and ask them to open wide. Try to avoid putting anything in their mouths at this stage and just explain you are going to have a look how big their teeth are getting. Finally, it will help your child if you yourself can remain calm when they visit the dentist. Your emotions will rub off on them and they will sense your own anxiety which in turn reflects on them. Prepare yourself for some of the usual shenanigans young children act out when they are reluctant to do something.

With adults the fear may seem a little illogical, it is however still very common. There are a number of techniques you can use to overcome your fear, the first being relaxation. Try taking slow, deep breaths and thinking of something pleasant like a recent good experience. You can even try muscle relaxation techniques. Another would be some kind of distraction, typically audio, by listening to music through your smartphone. If alternative medicine is your thing then acupuncture has been used for relaxation purposes for centuries. This is still a relatively new approach in dentistry though.

About the Dentist

If you require more advice contact a Navan dentist, Boyne Dental and Implant in Meath, Ireland.