It’s no secret that the pandemic has had mental health consequences for many. While we saw tons of patients with dental anxiety before the pandemic at our dentist office in Clayton, we’re seeing more than ever now that the pandemic’s effects have taken hold of many.
The good news about dental anxiety is it can be overcome. As a gentle dentistry practice, we’re uniquely equipped to help individuals through this difficult mental health struggle and we have helped patients with even the most severe dental anxiety recover from their fears, so they can sit comfortably in the dentist’s chair again.
How You Can Overcome Dental Anxiety
Now, you’re probably asking how? Here are the top three tips we like to share:
Use Relaxation Techniques Before & During Your Appointment
Relaxation techniques like meditation, deep breathing, restorative yoga, and essential oils are all ways to get in a zen mindset before your appointment. Coming in with a sense of calm, rather than tension, is key. Some of these techniques can even be applied during the treatment if you begin to feel on edge—especially breathing. Simply ask the team to take a pause, inhale slowly for four counts, hold your breath for seven counts, and exhale for eight counts. Or you can search YouTube for breathing and meditation techniques for anxiety, try them out before your appointment to see which calms you the most to be prepared!
Ask All the Questions
By definition, anxiety is our body’s natural reaction to fear or sense of danger. It’s a protective mechanism. Sometimes, fear of the unknown, not understanding a procedure or having questions you’re too embarrassed to ask, can trigger this. It could be something as simple as what a specific tool is used for during your cleaning, or asking for an in-depth play-by-play of what to anticipate during a dental surgery. Our team will always answer all your questions and explain in simple terms to make you feel safe, heard, and understood.
When All Else Fails, Ask About Sedation Options
When all else doesn’t seem to ease your worries, know that sedation dentistry is an option. Through using light sedatives, our skilled and certified dental team can help you get through your cleanings and dental procedures.
Dr. Winsome Henry-Ward’s Team Can Help You With Your Dental Anxiety
Part of overcoming dental anxiety is making sure you have the right dental team on your side. A team that will understand, judgement-free, what you’re going through and listen to what YOU need to feel comfortable. Dr. Winsome Henry-Ward’s team’s top priorities are your oral health and your comfort in the dentist’s chair. Call today to schedule a dental consultation in our St. Louis area dental office at 314-862-1118. We can’t wait to see you and help you overcome your fears!