It is a common sentiment: “I am afraid of going to the dentist”, or “I hate the shot” or “I can’t stand the noise of the drill.”
Fortunately there are many alternatives to alleviate apprehension of a dental visit.
The first approach is to better understand what treatment is necessary and with this fuller understanding of the treatment, ones fear of the unknown should be less. For example once you understand that a root canal is not painful and that it is essentially a special type of filling, one can more comfortably associate this new experience with one that has been experienced without problems.
A second approach is with medication and more will be written about these choices in this blog section. But to be brief, one can choose between:
For people who are bothered by the noises of dental treatment we recommend using ear phones. We have them for patients who wish to listen to the radio (their choice of stations) and it is not uncommon for people to listen to music they have on their cell phones.
Many people will relate that they have a fear that the treatment will be painful. But whether the treatment is something like porcelain veneers, periodontal treatment or a simple composite filling we can control pain. We initiate the local anesthetic with a powerful topical anesthetic and using distraction techniques the “dreaded” injection is barely felt (so says the great majority of my patients). And there are different types of methods of delivering the local anesthetic so our experience is that patients are overwhelmingly comfortable. Of course, the anesthetic leaves one with a numb lip for a while but this actually gives one a head start on healing.
Modern dentistry, I will admit, so not necessity fun but it does not have to be painful.