3 Ways To Allay Your Odontophobia
Conquering your fears is a difficult task, especially when those fears aren't rooted in rational thinking. Odontophobia is fear of the dentist, and it is very common. You may feel a range of discomfort from anxiety to downright terror. Regardless of the basis of your fear, you know that you must make your oral health a priority so that you can lead a full and healthy life. Facing your fear of the dentist can definitely be difficult, but with the appropriate strategy and support you can successfully get through a dental appointment. Here are three strategies for allaying your odontophobia.
Let an audiobook transport you to a different place.
Certain aspects of a dentist's office can trigger your anxiety. It is important to think through your stress and try to identify key triggers that you can take control of. The sights and sounds of the dentist's office are often what sets off anxiety for most people. You can block these stimuli out by listening to a playlist or an audiobook during your appointment. Some find a familiar list of songs comforting, while others like to transport their minds to a different place by listening to a new audiobook. Audiobooks are very easy to come by; you can download them from a streaming service or borrow them from a local library. The novelty of the details of a new story allow you to invest more of your attention in the story than in your surroundings.
Book your dental appointments well in advance.
If you dread going to the dentist, then it is all too easy for you to avoid making your next appointment. You should visit the dentist twice a year for regular cleanings. Make your appointments well in advance so that you are able to control the variables that cause your dental anxiety to ramp up. Seeing the date getting closer on the calendar might make you uncomfortable, but giving yourself the gift of time allows you to work closely with your dentist and to organize your schedule so that you are as comfortable as possible. Your dentist can try to limit the number of people in the office and give you plenty of time to be comfortable, and you can arrange important, busy appointments around your dental visit so that you can unwind after your teeth cleaning.
Use sleep dentistry for extreme anxiety attacks.
Odontophobia is so consuming for some people that they cannot get through an appointment with having an extreme panic attack. In these cases, it is best to use sleep dentistry. Also known as sedation dentistry, sleep dentistry allows you to remain calm while getting all of your necessary dental work done. Sedation dentistry consists of using oral or gas medications to help you relax or reach a twilight state of consciousness.
For more information, talk to a professional like Associated Family Dentistry LTD.