It is perfectly natural to experience a little anxiety when it is time to make a trip to the dental office. Most patients feel this way from time to time. Especially, if they are due to undergo some type of dental procedure such as a tooth extraction or root canal therapy.
Patients with dental phobia, on the other hand, suffer an extreme fear of the dentist. This irrational fear can keep you from seeking the dental care needed to keep your oral health at its highest level. Such fear can lead to serious dental problems.
Dental Phobia vs Anxiety
Most people experience anxiety concerning the dentist. In fact, up to 20% of the American population will avoid going to the dentist because of their anxiety. When you consider what a visit to the dentist entails, it is not surprising. On your first visit to a new dentist, you are allowing at least one or two strangers (the dentist and assistant or hygienist) to put their fingers and certain tools in your mouth. It can seem like a very invasive experience, so anxiety is to be expected.
Dental phobia goes beyond anxiety. Dental phobia is a serious condition that renders a person terrified. The patient may be aware that this deep fear is irrational. However, the ability to do anything about the fear is not there.
People with dental phobia avoid going to the dentist at all costs. You can imagine what this can lead to, which is severe problems with teeth and gums. It is not uncommon for such patients to have abscesses and/or periodontal disease before they see a dentist.
Meeting the Patient in Their Distress
At AIDA, one of our main goals is to provide each patient with the information he or she needs in order to feel comfortable and informed about the dental procedures recommended. This is especially true for the patient with dental phobia.
Talking to your dentist about your fears can help alleviate some of your anxiety. We understand the discomfort and irrational fears that patients with dental phobia experience. We take your anxiety seriously and work with you to help you have a pleasant experience despite the fear.
Dental phobia can be treated and overcome. At AIDA, we will do our part to help you handle dental fear so you can receive the oral care you need to look and feel your best. Contact Aesthetic & Implant Dentistry of Atlanta, and make an appointment today.