We understand that for some of our patients visiting the dentist may be a source of anxiety. As a result, you may only seek dental care once absolutely necessary, which means you’ll ignore your dental problems until the pain or discomfort becomes unbearable. This can result in more serious oral and health problems and costly treatment down the road.
We have years of experience working with anxious patients at Warrnambool Smile Dental. Our goal is to make your dental journey as comfortable and stress-free as possible. With the latest technology, and a gentle and friendly team, we will do everything possible to help you work your way through your dental anxiety and have a wonderful dental visit.
What Is Dental Anxiety?
Fear, anxiety or stress associated with the dentist, dental setting or dental treatment is dental anxiety. This condition is common among many patients, so you are not alone. However, avoiding the dentist can have adverse effects on your oral health. Lack of timely dental care can worsen the dental condition, require more complex and costly treatments, and worsen your fear of the dentist.
At the same time, since oral health is closely linked with overall health, avoiding the dentist can even cause other health troubles like heart disease and diabetes. However, you don’t have to suffer and let your dental anxiety win. Simply take that first step and let us handle the rest. Our team at Warrnambool Smile Dental will help you overcome your dental anxiety with the most gentle and pain-free dental care.
What Causes Dental Anxiety?
Some of the most common causes of your dental anxiety may include:
Traumatic dental/medical experiences in the past
Fear of needles and other dental tools
Fear of losing control or feeling of helplessness
Anxiety, depression or PTSD
A sense of shame or embarrassment about your dental condition
Fear of pain
A sense of invasion of personal space, agoraphobia or claustrophobia
Traumatic experiences or trauma to the head and neck
No matter the cause behind your fear of the dentist, our team is here to help you through it. We understand each of these fears and much more, so talk to us if you feel anxious at any point.
Signs & Symptoms Of Dental Anxiety
Signs and symptoms of dental anxiety will vary from person to person as the way you cope with anxiety may be different. Most of the time, you may find yourself routinely missing dental appointments because of your anxiety. Sometimes, you may not even realise you have dental anxiety until you visit the dental clinic for your appointment.
Here are some common symptoms people with dental anxiety experience:
Difficulty sleeping the night before your dental appointment
Palpitations or racing heartbeat
Visible distress, signs of panic or crying
Low blood pressure and fainting
Shallow, rapid breathing
Sweating and fidgeting
If this sounds familiar, simply let us know and we’ll be happy to gently guide you through your appointment every step of the way.
Consequences Of Avoiding The Dentist
If you have dental anxiety, you may think that staying away from the dentist for as long as possible is a good idea. It’s not! In fact, it will only make things worse. Suppose you avoid regular dental check-ups and appointments and visit the dentist only when you have no choice. In that case, you may have to undergo emergency procedures or complex and costly treatments, worsening your anxiety.
For instance, ignoring dental problems such as tooth decay and gum disease will eventually lead to tooth loss. This can affect the functionality of your teeth, including speaking and chewing, the aesthetics of your smile and also affect your confidence. It needn’t get this far, however.
Our team at Warrnambool Smile Dental will help you maintain good oral health through regular checkups and catch any problematic issues in their earliest stages. Simply schedule that first consultation with our friendly team! Our dentist will get to know you and understand your needs and you will have a great patient experience that’s all about you!
How To Manage Dental Anxiety
While it can be challenging, small steps in managing anxiety will help you overcome this. Here are some small yet effective steps that you can take if you have dental anxiety:
Find a dentist you feel comfortable with
Book a morning appointment so you won’t spend your day worrying about it
Arrive at the dental clinic a few minutes before your appointment to avoid rushing out on any paperwork, etc. (if any)
Ask a friend or family member to tag along with you
Bring a pair of headphones to distract yourself
Talk to our dentist about your fears and clarify any concerns you may have
Be mindful of your breathing
Consider a series of short visits. The more frequently you visit the dentist the more routine it becomes
Discuss sedation options with your dentist
Focus on the positive outcomes of your visit
Our team is committed to making sure your experience at our dental practice is a positive and comfortable one. We are here to help you manage and overcome dental anxiety.
Dental Anxiety In Children
Positive experiences at the dentist as a child can set the tone for good oral hygiene and dental visits in the future. That’s why visiting the dentist at a young age is important. However, dental visits may not be something that your kid looks forward to.
As parents, you can help alleviate this fear by introducing dental visits early on in your kid’s life and teaching them the importance of good oral health. We will take care of the rest and make dental visits enjoyable and fun for them. Offering a range of children’s dentistry solutions, we will help lay the foundation for good oral health and prevent dental anxiety.
What To Look For In A Dentist?
Finding a good dentist you are comfortable with can play a huge role in how you look at dental visits and oral health. This is true for everybody, regardless of whether you have dental anxiety or not. When looking for a dentist or dental practice, make sure you settle for one with a gentle and friendly approach to dentistry.
At Warrnambool Smile Dental, we are dedicated to getting to know your needs, understanding your fears and helping you feel at ease. Our team will work hard to gain your trust and build confidence by prioritising you and your needs. Experience gentle and compassionate care at Warrnambool Smile Dental.
Why Choose Warrnambool Smile Dental?
At Warrnambool Smile Dental, we will always do everything we can to make your dental experience good – from the moment you step in until you leave. Our state-of-the-art facilities have been designed with your comfort in mind. We have also invested in cutting-edge technology to make dental treatments and procedures as pain-free as possible.
Our friendly team is always ready to lend an ear and help ease your worries. We understand the importance of open communication and will take the time to understand and address your concerns. We will also explain every step of your treatment beforehand so there aren’t any last-minute surprises.
At our clinic, you will always be in control. We will ensure your treatment proceeds at a pace you are comfortable with and use various techniques to keep you relaxed. We offer local anesthesia to help alleviate pain and fear for more complex procedures. Talk to our experienced dentists today for gentle dental care that puts you first.