Do You Suffer from Dental Fear?
Dental anxiety is a problem for many Americans. While the vast majority of dental appointments don’t involve pain or trauma, those facing dental fear often avoid seeing their dentist for years or even decades, and this can seriously jeopardize their oral and general health. Some people have mild fear of dentist visits, while others may actually get physically ill. Signs and symptoms of a serious dental anxiety problem include an inability to sleep the night before a scheduled appointment, crying, dizziness, nausea, shortness of breath, and trembling hands.
Fear or anxiety about visiting the dentist shouldn’t be confused with the more serious dental phobia. While most people can tolerate anxiety symptoms, phobia symptoms may be disabling. A phobia causes more intense effects such as full-blown panic attacks and irrational thoughts or actions. People with dental phobia are at higher risk for gum disease and tooth loss, and they may even have poor general health because of dental neglect. Fortunately, it can be treated once the cause is determined.
The Most Common Causes of Dental Anxiety
- Fear of pain is the number-one cause of dental anxiety. This is particularly common in adults who experienced pain during prior dental procedures, before today’s pain-free techniques were available.
- Dental anxiety can be caused by feelings of helplessness or loss of control. Many people feel confined and unable to predict or control what is happening to them when sitting in a dentist’s chair, which can trigger anxiety symptoms.
- Self-consciousness or embarrassment about the condition of their teeth or possible bad breath causes anxiety in some people. Because dental treatments require unusually close contact, having the dentist’s face mere inches away can be stressful.
- Suffering a negative dental experience in the past can haunt a patient for decades. Pain, discomfort, trauma, or embarrassment during a procedure will make it more difficult to face the next dental appointment.
Many people who experience dental anxiety or phobia find that talking to their dentist can help. If symptoms are severe, a mental health consultation may be necessary.
To get the dental care you deserve from an affordable dentist in South Bend, call The Dental Center of South Bend today at (574) 367-7000 or make an appointment.
The Dental Center offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in South Bend. With 4 affiliated practices throughout Indiana, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At The Dental Center of South Bend, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at The Dental Center of South Bend.