Dental Phobia – Causes and Solutions

If your heart begins to race wildly and you get stomach cramps just by looking at the title, then don’t be afraid. Dr Hung & Associates Dental Center discusses the reasons behind “dental phobia” and how it spreads in a society.

Dental phobia, the phobia that force-chokes you at the mere thought of visiting your dentist and drives you to live with the pain of a decayed, or a missing tooth is actually quite ungrounded. How? Well, in today’s dentistry we are able to apply dental procedures to eliminate phobias, rather than building onto them. Besides, today’s technology is quite advanced.

Fear is a natural emotion

Fear has its place in the human nature, which means that it is perfectly natural. Fears help us continue our daily lives. If we did not feel fear, we would continuously take risks without thinking about the consequences they may bring. Fear is why we have safe zones. Our safe zone is the 50-cm radius around us.

This is our area of privacy. Allowing only our parents, significant others, children or relatives into our safe zone will not bother us. Our safe zone is why we look down in an elevator in the corner of one, shutting ourselves away.

That 50-cm radius is where a dentist has to be, when working on your teeth. That is, they enter your safe zone. My advice, especially for those whose phobias are at extremes, is to chat with your dentist before an examination.

As for kids, the emotion of fear is not truly developed in them during the period when they are big fans of stray animals and run up to pet them on the streets; hence having no episodes of dental phobia. They learn this phobia through their parents and the bad experiences their parents have had.

So, if your child has not met a dentist yet, try to do your best for him to like dentists, instead of planting such fears into their souls.

Bad experiences

The biggest factor that contributes to dental phobia is a bad experience in the past. A painful dentist visit you had, or a bad experience your parents had when they took you to the dentist, are examples of such experiences. In addition, sometimes, threats from your parents that you are to be taken to a dentist if you don’t behave makes you think that “dentists are evil”. Although we rely on suggestions for patients like these, sometimes we require hypnosis or sedation to work with them.

How to lose your dental phobia

Talk to your doctor about your phobia. What are you afraid of? Is it their injectors? Their tools? Try to be as definite as possible. You know what? Some patients are even afraid of water leaking into their throats.

During a chat with your doctor, the reason behind your fears may be figured out, and you two may find just the right solution accordingly.

Before your visit to a dentist, massage your stress point. Massage the spot in the middle of your cheekbone in circular motions, or roll up your fingers into a fist and gently hit your chest.

Breathe through your diaphragm

When you are afraid, your breaths will be through the upper part of your lungs, in a short and rapid succession. Instead, try to fill up your diaphragm with air, like a balloon; then, wait for a little while before breathing out. This is the type of breath that we all take when our life begins, as babies. Do this especially before sitting into the dental chair, for 5-6 minutes. Exercise good posture.

Herbal tea

You may have a mixture of herbal teas to soothe yourself, like camomile tea, lime tea and cinnamon tea, before visiting your dentist.

Condition yourself positively. Never ever use negations in your suggestions. Making “I’m not going to freak out” your mantra, will freak you out. Instead using phrases like “All is well, everything is under my control,” will be more helpful.

You have the power to control your body and soul. Just like Indian fakirs who rest on hundreds of needles. We often suffer household accidents that are more painful than a visit to our dentists. Though, there are so many people who are unable to sleep through their toothache that would be gone if they never delayed therapy; due to dental phobia. When the anesthetic solutions kick in and people are treated without feeling anything, many patients are amazed – “That was it?” So, start your dental treatment. Or even better, start while you do not even have tooth decays and use protective agents.

Remember, dentistry is really advanced in Turkey and every dentist is able and skilled to offer you a pain-free treatment.

Dr Hung & Associates Dental Center in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam is a friendly, modern dental clinic offering an extensive range of high quality, affordable services, including general dentistry, dental implants, cosmetic dentistry, family dentistry, dental and maxillofacial surgery, orthodontics and laser treatments. The clinic is fully equipped with cutting edge dental facilities and the experienced team of dentists provide the most up-to-date techniques currently available.