Effective Ways to Treat Dental Anxiety

Effective Ways to Treat Dental Anxiety

July 1, 2020

Dental anxiety is the fear or stress you are likely to experience in a dental setting. Are you scared to visit a dentist? Well! You might be experiencing dental anxiety. Failure to visit your dentist due to anxiety leads to delay in the treatment of issues that can manifest into other complications.

This kind of anxiety is associated with the fear of needles, drilling, or even the dentistry set-up in general. When the anxiety to visit a dentist is extreme, the condition is classified as dental phobia. Some mental health conditions increase the risk of dental anxiety. These conditions include:

  • Generalized anxiety disorder
  • Depressive disorders
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Bipolar disorders
  • Schizophrenia

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Dental Anxiety?

Some of the signs and symptoms that a person with dental anxiety might experience are:

  • Sweating
  • Low blood pressure that can lead to fainting
  • Signs of panic such as crying especially in children
  • Heart palpitations or tachycardia
  • Using aggression or humor to mask the anxiety
  • Difficulties sleeping before a dental exam
  • Intense distress everytime an object is placed in your mouth during a dental procedure

How Can Dental Anxiety Affect Your Oral Health?

Failure to visit the dentist in the case of a problem increases the severity of the problem. Sometimes the problem might require emergency treatment or complex procedures while the problem required a simple procedure initially.

Regular check-ups and cleanings can prevent diseases and help the dentist detect diseases such as oral cancer in its early stages. If a problem is detected early, it won’t require invasive treatment procedures. When you fail to visit a dentist regularly, you are not only like to need complex treatment procedures but also miss a lot on how to take care of your teeth.

Causes of Dental Anxiety

There are several reasons that one has dental anxiety. Common causes of dental phobia or anxiety include:

  • Algophobia: Algophobia is the fear of pain. This condition is a common reason why many individuals do not visit the dentist’s office. The root of this phobia is an experience in a dentist office that was unpleasant. At other times stories from friends induce the phobia.
  • Fear of the side effects of anesthesia: Anesthetic side effects such as nausea, dizziness, and feeling faintmight discourage you from visiting ab dentist. Other people feel uncomfortable due to the numbness caused by anesthesia.
  • The fear of needles and injections: A reasonable number of people fear needles, especially when injected on mouth surfaces. Other people fear that the anesthesia wasn’t enough to numb the site of treatment.
  • A feeling of helplessness: Some people feel uncomfortable sitting in a dentist’s chair, their mouths wide open, and with no control of the situation at all.
  • Embarrassment: Feeling self-conscious about the appearance of the teeth and possible mouth odors can cause dental anxiety. At other times physical closeness between the dentist and the patient will make individuals resent dental appointments.

Dental Anxiety Treatment in Houston

How can I get a child anxiety treatment near me? Have you asked yourself this question multiple times? Greenway Pediatric Dentistry is a dental clinic that offers anxiety treatment in 77098.

In our clinic, we use several ways to treat dental anxiety in children. These are the pain management and anxiety techniques we use:

Nitrous Oxide

Nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas, is a mild form of sedation. This technique is preferred for treating children. Your child inhales a gentle mix of nitrogen and oxygen gases through a facial mask. The gas induces moderate or mild sedation, immediately and the effect will wear out minutes after removing the mask.

Deep Sedation

We use this technique to treat patients with severe anxiety. During this procedure, we use a sedation drug to induce a depression of your consciousness. This treatment option is administered and monitored by an anesthesiologist.

Conscious Sedation

Conscious sedation can be helpful for children with anxiety. Unlike in deep sedation, your child can respond to verbal commands either on their own or with light tactile stimulation.

Local or General Anesthesia

The dentist will apply local anesthesia on the gum tissue around the treatment area.

General anesthesia induces loss of consciousness. The whole body will be numb and help in providing better outcomes during treatment. However, this technique impairs you ability to breathe independently. Therefore patients will require assistance in maintaining a functional airway.