Proper dental care is essential for patients to enjoy good oral health and beautiful smiles. But for many patients, getting this care is harder than it seems – and it’s not because of busy schedules or financial issues. Instead, a strong fear of dentists and dental procedures stands in these patients’ way. This fear is called dental anxiety or dental phobia.
At Lake Hill Dental Care, we understand that many patients suffer from this form of anxiety, and we’re dedicated to helping them get care through sedation dentistry. To help patients who may have fear around visiting the dentist, we have put together this brief primer. Keep reading to learn more about dental anxiety, what causes it, how sedation dentistry can help – and how to determine if you might be a candidate for this type of dentistry.
In the simplest of terms, dental anxiety is fear or anxiousness surrounding dental appointments. Sometimes this anxiety is mild – a feeling of nervousness or butterflies when at the dentist’s office or when it comes time to make a new appointment. But too often, this anxiety can be debilitating. Patients with dental anxiety may put off or even forgo necessary dental care because they’re too fearful of going to the dentist.
The causes of dental anxiety are unique and varied as the patients who suffer from it. That being said, patients with dental anxiety can often trace their fears back to one or more of these common threads:
For many patients, sedation dentistry is the easiest way to combat dental anxiety and get the dental work they need to enjoy a beautiful, healthy smile. Sedation dentistry is the use of medication to help patients relax during their procedure. There are many different sedation options available including everything from nitrous oxide sedation (a patient breathes in a mix of gases that helps them to relax during the procedure) to general anesthesia (the patient is completely unconscious during the procedure). Patients and their dentist work together to determine which form of sedation is best for the patient’s needs.
Once under sedation, patients will feel a deep sense of calm. In addition to feeling relaxed and comfortable, they don’t have to worry about controlling their gag reflex or any unpleasant sensations. Pain is numbed, and even the most persistent anxiety is often soothed. As an added bonus, sedation dentistry can often save time, as it allows extensive dental work to be completed with fewer appointments. Even patients who don’t generally suffer from dental anxiety can benefit from sedation dentistry for complex or lengthy dental procedures.
The easiest way to know if you’re a candidate for sedation dentistry is to talk to a dentist! Here at Lake Hill Dental Care, we routinely offer sedation dentistry to patients from Burnt Hills, NY; Clifton Park, NY; East Glenville, NY; and the surrounding areas. We go over all the options and the pros and cons before we ask our patients to commit to any treatment. Depending on your general state of health, we may also ask you to consult with your physician before we recommend sedation dentistry.
If you’re looking for an easier, less anxiety-provoking way to get the dental care you need, sedation dentistry may very well be the answer for you. We invite patients who are interested in sedation dentistry to call our office to Dr. Denning and Dr. Johnstone to learn more and see if you’re a candidate. Fill out the form on this page for a complimentary consultation!