Dental phobias are very common; in fact, Peter Milgrom, DDS and director of the Dental Fears Research Clinic at the University of Washington, estimated that 5% to 8% of American’s will avoid the dentist due to a dental phobia. He also estimated that a staggering 20% will only go to the dentist when absolutely necessary because of the anxiety the experience causes them.
Most dentists and psychologists agree that dental phobias can be ‘rooted’ from three specific fears:
- Algophobia or Agliophobia: An abnormal or extreme fear of pain.
- Blood-Injection-Injury (BII) Phobia: A fear of blood, needles and/or medical procedures.
- Nosophobia: An abnormal fear of contracting a disease. This can also sometimes stem from Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
However, some psychologists suggest that the perceived lack of control one has while in the dentist chair can also be a big, if not the most defining factor, of dental phobia.
So how can you maintain your oral health if you have a dental phobia? The solution is in finding the best dentist in Ottawa for you. You will know when you have found the right dental clinic in Ottawa by getting a feel for the environment and communication they provide to their patients. Look for a dental clinic on Ottawa that seeks to ease dental phobia in their patients by employing the following measures:
– Explaining the procedure both before and during the process. By ensuring the patient understands what is going on at all times it may help them feel more in control.
– Continually asking the patient if they are feeling alright and if it is OK to continue with the process.
– Letting the patient know before any procedures that they can stop anytime.
– A good dental clinic in Ottawa should also be able to set a schedule for the process. If the procedure is going to be long, the dentist and patient may be able to set scheduled breaks. The best dentist in Ottawa could then remind the patient that the next break will occur shortly.
– When dealing with patients with BII Phobia, seeking alternative forms of sedatives when possible.
Now let’s say you’ve found the best dentist in Ottawa who will take all the measures mentioned above to ensure your comfort. Is there anything you can still do? Absolutely.
– Distract yourself: Create a relaxing playlist and pop in your headphones.
– Do the research: Even though your dental clinic in Ottawa will go over any information and procedures with you, preparing yourself before you go may help with pre-visit jitters.
– Bring a family member or friend: They might be able to offer the extra moral support you need!
Maintaining proper oral health and hygiene is an integral part of our overall health – so it’s important to find the best dentist in Ottawa who will help to work around your phobia.