If you are afraid of the dentist you are certainly not alone. In fact up to a quarter of the population feel some anxiety around their dental visit. Having worked as a dentist for over twenty years helping hundreds of nervous patients feel relaxed in the dental chair I have direct experience and a thorough understanding of the management of dental anxiety.
People who are frightened of the dentist often have had a painful or uncomfortable experience to do with a dental visit or their mouth in the past. When the chair is lowered back they often believe that they no longer have any control over the procedure and may also feel distrustful that the dentist will ignore any requests should they need a pause. As they expect to feel pain at any minute their mind races with worrying thoughts, their body reacts ‘as if’ the worst has already happened, making their anxiety worse as they feel hyper alert and hyper sensitive to the procedure, noticing absolutely everything in fine magnified detail. As dentistry takes place in the mouth this can for some people feel intrusive and threatening. For others not being able to talk easily can feel restrictive and claustrophobic.
Dental phobia occurs when the fear is so great that a person avoids going to the dentist altogether. They may not have seen a dentist for decades unless they were in severe pain. An additional fear in this group of people is a fear of being judged by the dentist that they haven’t looked after their teeth or their mouth and will be the worst the dentist has ever seen.
Overcoming Dental Anxiety & Dental Phobia with Mindbalance
The good news is that people can and do get over their dental fear/ phobia with my help at Mindbalance Hypnotherapy. Also finding a dentist for your dental treatment who has a good reputation with an approachable caring manner is also important.
If you have mild anxiety – Using hypnosis can really help you to relax at the dentist.
For more moderate to severe anxiety/phobia – A more comprehensive therapeutic approach is required. This is where your fears are explored in more detail and the original fear is broken down using a combined approach of hypnotherapy, CBT and NLP with relaxing techniques and coping skills also being taught.
This can help you to feel and think differently about visiting the dentist enabling you to feel more relaxed and in control prior to and during your dental appointments. Having a mouth you know is healthy can really give you peace of mind, whilst an attractive smile can really boost your self esteem and confidence.