I think I have an actual Dental Phobia! How do I know for sure?
Dental phobia (also called odontophobia, dentophobia, dentist phobia, dental anxiety or dental fear) refers to the fear of dentistry and receiving dental care. It is estimated that as many as 75% of adults experience some degree of fear from mild to severe. Many dentally fearful people will only seek dental care when they have an emergency such as a toothache or abscess. People who are very fearful experience what is called a “cycle of avoidance”, in which they avoid care due to fear until they experience an emergency requiring invasive treatment, which can reinforce their fear.
The causes of fear can be a result of a direct experience, such as a traumatic, difficult, and/or painful firsthand experience. An indirect experience would be Vicarious Learning (hearing about others’ negative experience), Mass Media (negative portrayal), Stimulus Generalization (result of a previous experience) and Helplessness and Perceived Lack of Control (perception of lack of control leads to fear). Yes, even those of us who have worked in the dental field for more than 20 years experience this one! As your trusted Carson City dentists, it is our hope that you will so fully understand the treatment and process that your fears will be lessened.
People fear what they do not understand and dislike pain. With a combination of digital x-rays and photographs, we will explain to you what treatment is needed, and take the time to answer any of your questions. For those whose fear is so great that the above management technique is not enough, we offer oral sedation and anti-anxiety medication taken in pill form. While these sedatives may help people feel calmer and sometimes drowsy during treatment, patients are still conscious and able to communicate with the dental staff.
The most important part of overcoming fear is your comfort. We will try and make your visit with us as pleasant as possible. It is also important to us that you know what is being done and why. Our doctors and team members are here for you, and there are never too many, or silly questions. We encourage you to bring an iPod or other form of music device for distraction, and we are always available for hand holding and reassurance.
Make an appointment today for a NEW PATIENT exam with your Carson City dentists, Dr. Clint Euse, Dr. Kelly Euse, Dr. Randy Wright, and Dr. Matt Lisenby. A NEW PATIENT exam is an easy and non-evasive way to meet our doctors and friendly team! We look forward to meeting you soon!