How to Cope with the Fear of the Dentist

No need to fear the dentist anymore!  The Havrilla Center for Periodontics & Dental Implants has SIX different ways to help any patient overcome their Dentophobia, including the Dentapen.  But first, sufferers need to understand what dental phobia is and know that we understand your concerns.

What is Dentophobia?

It is estimated that nearly 75% of adults in the United States experience some amount of fear when faced with visiting the dentist.  Of that percentage, about five to 10 percent of those people have a strong enough fear to be considered sufferers of dental phobia or Dentophobia.  These individuals experience fear so strongly that they avoid dental visits.  While Dentophobia may be mild or severe, it can eventually lead to serious health issues.

What causes Dentophobia?

Also called dental fear, dental anxiety, dentist phobia or odontophobia, Dentophobia is often caused by a prior traumatic experience at the dentist.  Those experiences can include complications from procedures and painful procedures.  The fear can arise from a bad interaction with the dentist and how the dentist’s attitude was perceived.  If an individual received care from a dentist that was uncaring or cold in manner, the experience could result in increased fear.  Fear can also come about from hearing someone else’s traumatic experience or what they see and hear in mass media.  Some people can have their fear triggered just by seeing a doctor of any kind, smelling smells associated with hospitals or have a fear of people perceived to be in a position of power.

How to Treat Dentophobia?

There are several ways to treat Dentophobia and they can range from behavioral techniques to medication.  At the Havrilla Center for Periodontics & Dental Implants, we pride ourselves on easing anxiety levels on our Dentophobic patients.  We can accomplish this with six great measures.

  • Neck Pillows – These help patients feel less fidgety during treatment, plus heat helps relax muscles and alleviates pressure and pain in the back, hips and neck.
  • Offer headphones with disposable earbuds – Listening to music acts as a relaxant and also drowns out any fear-producing noises. It helps reduce anxiety.
  • Weighted blanket – By applying a gentle reassuring touch similar to someone putting their hand on your shoulder or a friendly hug, they are a proven technique to help alleviate anxiety and fear associated with dental treatments.
  • Nitrous oxide – The gas, which is inhaled by the patient through a sterilized rubber face mask, helps people feel more relaxed and is one of the common forms of sedation used in dental offices. Effects wear off quickly after the gas is turned off.
  • Conscious sedation including valium and valium & triazolam together – Under conscious sedation, patients remain awake and are able if necessary to communicate and respond to questions. It temporarily diminishes the fight or flight and pain receptors to afford the patient to a nearly paint-free dental appointment experience.
  • The Dentapen – It is your ticket to a pain-free dental appointment. The Dentapen, the new generation of powered injector for Dental Anesthesia which monitors the injection with a constant flow at the right pace to reduce pain in a non-threatening pen-like look.

We have found our Dentophobic patients are much more at ease with our methods and they let us know about.

If you suffer from dental fear, dental anxiety, dentist phobia, odontophobia or Dentophobia, The Havrilla Center for Periodontics & Dental Implants located in Broomall, Delaware County, PA, is here to ease your fears.

Take the first step now to beating Dentophobia and call us to talk about how we can get through it together - 610.328.9608.