13 Dec

Overcome dental phobia with relaxation tips from City of London dentist

A dental phobia is a severe fear of the dentist that is characterised by extreme emotional responses at even the prospect of going to the dentist. Technically a phobia is defined as an “irrational severe fear that leads you to avoid the subject completely”. Exposure to the specific stimulus, in this case the dentist’s surgery, provokes an immediate anxious response which in its severest form takes the form of a panic attack. This can have serious effects on the individual’s life and can certainly prevent them receiving the dental treatment that they need.
Fear of the dentist is very common, with many people experiencing some kind of anxious response when in the surgery. However, there are several different categories of severity that determine the fear ranging from mild fear to anxiety to phobia. For patients with dental phobia even a regular check up can be an extremely traumatic experience.
There are several common causes of dental phobia with a previous bad experience being the most notable. A painful procedure or particularly unsympathetic dentist (they are out there!) can put a patient off the dentist for life. Other common causes are a fear of lack of control, oral intrusion or transferred fear (this is when an anxious patient convinces a child that the dentist is something to be feared even though the child has had no previous bad experience).
There are ways to overcome dental phobia, which usually involve confronting your fear with the aid of various relaxation techniques and a greater degree of information about the procedures. City of London dentists recommend that nervous patients speak to their dentist who will explain the exact nature of the procedure. It is most important to remember that you are not alone and have no reason to feel embarrassed.