Top Ways to Ease Dental Anxiety
Up to 20% of Americans avoid going to the dentist due to dental anxiety. As you can imagine, this can lead to a wide variety of consequences including plaque buildup, untreated cavities, and gum disease. Of course, there are several ways you can ease dental anxiety before your next appointment. Try a few of them and see how you feel. If none of them work for you, sedation dentistry is always available as an option. And if you have dental anxiety in Bend, we can help with that.
Here Are Our Favorite Ways to Ease Dental Anxiety
Take Care of Your Dental Hygiene
One of the best ways to avoid dental anxiety is to ensure smooth sailing during your dental appointments. The better you take care of your teeth, the less dental work they’ll require. Make sure you brush your teeth twice a day (preferably with an electric toothbrush) and floss once a day. A water pick can also be used to thoroughly clean in between teeth or around dental equipment such as braces or retainers.
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
As you get closer to your appointment, make sure you’re getting enough sleep. General anxiety can kick in when the body hasn’t had enough time for rest and repair. That means you should aim for 7-8 hours each night—especially the evening before your appointment. If sleep is difficult for you, make sure that your room is dark, your curtains are drawn, and there are no lights or sounds bothering you (even digital alarm clocks or the small green light on your smoke detector can be bothersome).
If you drink coffee or tea regularly, you may not be aware of how caffeine is affecting your physiologically. Discontinue the use of all caffeinated beverages (including kombucha and soda) for at least a week before your dental appointment. You might be surprised to discover that caffeine was causing your anxiety and panic attacks all along. Not to mention, caffeine could be causing your sleep disorders as well.
One of the most common causes of dental anxiety is the sound of metal instruments on teeth. If that is true in your case, bring earplugs or noise-canceling headphones along to your appointment. By muting the sound dentists make during your appointment, you might eliminate the cause of your dental anxiety altogether.
Choose the Right Dentist for Dental Anxiety in Bend
Finally—and we can’t stress this enough—choose the right dentist. You’ll want to make sure you find one with a beautiful well-lit office, a friendly staff, and a dentist that understands your anxiety and is willing to make sure your needs are met and your appointment feels comfortable. And if you have dental anxiety in Bend, Oregon we’d love to help.
Dr. Dondo provides dental services for patients with dental anxiety in Bend, Oregon. He even offers sedation dentistry for those who could use a little extra relaxation during the appointment. Contact us for more information or to schedule your appointment. We’d love to help you have the best dental experience possible.
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