Dental anxiety affects millions of Americans, so if you’re uncomfortable during routine dental visits, you’re not alone. But there are steps you can take to ease your anxiety, and feel better about getting the dental care you need. Here are a few top tips & recommendations from Redmond Art of Dentistry.
1. DISCUSS YOUR FEARS WITH DR. BICKEL & OUR DENTAL TEAM
First, you need to work with a dentist who will listen to you and understand your fears and anxieties.
You can schedule a consultation with Dr. Daniel Bickel to talk to him about your past dental experiences, sources of stress at the dentist, and triggers (like the sound of a dental drill) so that he can understand more about you and your anxiety.
Then, Dr. Bickel can suggest coping strategies and tips, and he and our dental team will be able to modify and adjust your treatment plan to help with your anxiety.
2. BRING IN SOME HEADPHONES TO LISTEN TO MUSIC OR A PODCAST
Distractions are always good, especially at the dentist’s office. You’re free to bring in your phone and a set of headphones with you to listen to music or your favorite podcast. Focusing on something other than your dental treatment is often enough to help you feel much more calm throughout the process.
3. FOCUS ON YOUR BREATHING DURING YOUR PROCEDURE
It may sound too simple to work, but this really works! Focusing on your breathing and taking steady, deep breaths throughout can help ease your anxiety. In contrast, breathing shallowly and rapidly can lead to more feelings of panic and anxiety.
So when you’re being treated, breathe deeply and fully, and exhale slowly. Focus on your breathing, and you’ll be surprised at how much better you feel during your appointment.
4. GIVE YOURSELF PLENTY OF TIME TO GET TO THE DENTIST & RECOVER
Going to the dentist when you’re short on time can be even more stressful and anxiety-inducing.
If you are nervous about seeing the dentist, we recommend taking the afternoon off of work and coming in to see us, or picking some other time when you won’t have to go right back to work or your day-to-day routine.
If you have plenty of time to get to the dentist and to go home and recover from your procedure, you won’t feel nearly as anxious or uncomfortable during your treatment.
5. CONSIDER SEDATION IF YOU’RE STILL NERVOUS & ANXIOUS
Sedation dentistry can help you with anxiety and fear. We offer both minimal nitrous oxide (laughing gas) sedation, as well as deeper oral conscious sedation.
Minimal sedation with nitrous oxide is helpful for mild dental anxiety, and it wears off quickly, so you can get back to your daily routine.
Oral conscious sedation uses stronger pill-based sedatives to make you feel groggy and sleepy. You can’t drive home or immediately go back to work after being sedated with this method, so keep this in mind. If you’re not sure which method may be right for you, just ask Dr. Bickel for more information during your appointment.
CONTACT REDMOND ART OF DENTISTRY FOR GENTLE CARE IN REDMOND
Dr. Daniel Bickel has a caring, gentle, informative approach to dentistry, and we treat patients of all types at our office, including those with anxiety. So don’t wait. Contact us online or give us a call at (425) 386-7599 to schedule a consultation and make sure you get the dental care you need in Redmond.