Dental Anxiety and Fear

Dental anxiety and fear stop patients from visiting dentists even when they are suffering from serious dental issues. They are linked to distinct triggers like needles, drills, dental instruments and sometimes, the whole dental sitting. One may experience persistent sweating, racing heartbeat, increased heart palpitation, low blood pressure, losing consciousness, panic attacks, and withdrawal. Research states that over 60% of the total global population suffers from dental anxiety and fear. One may experience anxiety and fear during dental visits due to reasons like:

  • Past traumatic dental or medical experiences.
  • Trauma experienced in the head or neck in the past.
  • Repeated traumatic experiences like mental or physical abuse.
  • Generalized anxiety, depression, claustrophobia or stress disorder.
  • A constant feeling of intervention while the dentist is looking into your mouth.
  • Fear of losing control.
  • Prevailing trust issues.

This is where sedation dentistry comes in. Sedation dentistry helps people suffering from dental anxiety to overcome their fear of the dentist and receive the required dental treatment. 

What are the different anti-anxiety options available?

1.    Topical Anesthetics

Anesthesia is generally administered with the help of an injection which triggers some people and incites in them a feeling of fear and anxiety. On the other hand, topical anesthetics are applied using a swab. It is a non-invasive process and does not employ needles. It helps people suffering from dental anxiety to feel relaxed and comfortable.

2.    General Anesthetics

People suffering from fear and dental anxiety can undergo dental treatments under the effect of a general anesthetic. General anesthetics put you to sleep for the entire duration of the dental procedure. General anesthesia is given using a needle but you won't feel any discomfort or pain due to the prior application of a topical anesthetic.

3.    Electronically Administered Anesthesia

Electronically administered anesthesia provides an alternative to injecting local anesthesia (which is the prime reason for dental anxiety and fear). Electrical impulses are used to numb the treatment area while placing an adhesive pad on the face. The intensity of the level of stimulation is controlled by the patient himself. This makes the patient feel in control, which in turn reduces his anxiety.

4.    Intravenous Sedation

Intravenous sedation involves the injection of a sedative into the vein of the patient's arm or hand to control fear and anxiety. Sedatives provide extreme relaxation and allow the dentist to complete the dental procedures without interruptions due to panic attacks.

5. Laser Dentistry

Lasers are used to remove decay, damage, and diseased gum tissues. They cause less to no pain and help the patients feel relaxed and comfortable.

6. Distraction Strategies

Hospitals provide you with distraction strategies like virtual reality goggles to engage you in visually appealing images and videos to keep your mind off the procedure.

Dr. Sumeet Masaun and her team are committed to treating multiple dental health issues with the latest technology. She is dedicated to improving the health, function, and beauty of your smile. Pleasanton Smiles transforms the smiles of patients living in California, 94566. For further queries and doubts, schedule an appointment with us at 925.425.7114 or visit our office.


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