Dental Fear? Understanding Dentophobia and Tips to Overcome

Are you one of the Aussies feared of visiting the dentist? You’re not alone. According to the Australian Dental Health Association, about 53% of Aussies are scared of dental visits. In fact, Australians are suffering from Dentophobia, with about 70% delaying dental treatments. In addition, parents with Dentophobia are putting their child’s oral health at risk because about thousands of children end up in dental clinics for tooth decay where extraction is the viable option to prevent the adjacent teeth.

Often, people avoid dental treatments because they’re too afraid of dental appointments. Maybe they’re scared of the sounds or fear the sharp dental objects. Perhaps, the dental clinic setting scares them. However, dental anxiety shouldn’t stop you from visiting the Epping dentist.

So, What Is Dentophobia?

Fear of the dentist that’s more common than you’d think. Dentophobia, also known as dental phobia, is an intense fear of going to the dentist. It can be so bad that the person will do anything just to avoid it, including postponing dental care indefinitely.

It’s not uncommon for people with this anxiety disorder to develop other fears and anxieties as well.  Many dentophobes have developed claustrophobia or even agoraphobia because of their fear of being trapped in the chair or in small spaces.

What Are The Signs Of Dentophobia?

The symptoms of dentophobia can include

  • Increased heart rate
  • Nausea
  • Panic attacks
  • Hyperventilation
  • Refusing to visit the dentist
  • Crying in the dental office

Dental phobics also often experience an irrational fear of the dentist which can cause them to avoid dental treatment even when it is absolutely necessary.

What Causes The Dental Fear?

  • The Fear of Pain

This is one of the most common causes of dental fear that many people experience it. People with dentophobia associate dental treatments with pain. In addition, someone who is particularly sensitive to the pain or had a previously painful experience at the dentist’s office or negatively associates the dentist with pain can cause dental fear.

  • An Information Learning Experience

Yes, you read it right. Dentophobia can be learned from other people’s dental experience. For instance, learning the facts about dental treatments and surgical procedures from others.

  • A Learned Phobia

It can be learned in an observational learning experience. This happens when someone is exposed to dentophobia during childhood.

  • Stress

Long-term stress can result in fear responses or the inability to manage stressful, intense situations. Long-term significant stress can result in developing dentophobia if they are exposed to traumatic dental situation.

What Are The Complications Associated With Dental Fear?

Dental treatments can help save your teeth and gums, which are important for speaking, eating, and smiling. Missing teeth can reduce your self-esteem and cause dental complications. Failure to visit the dentist Epping if you experience certain dental problems can have negative consequences on your oral and overall health. The following are the dental complications associated with delaying visits to the Epping dentist,

  • Dental decay
  • Gum disease
  • Dental cavities
  • Inflammation of blood vessels
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Oral Cancer

As you see, a lot of complications can arise if you put off dental treatments. It’s of utmost importance to overcome dental fear. What can happen if you procrastinate dental visit during a dental emergency? You might lose a tooth, leading to various complications. So, it’s essential to visit the emergency dentist Epping to combat the dental emergency.

How to Overcome Dental Fear?

Anxiety and fear can be managed with a few simple tricks. Yoga is an effective way of calming the mind and relieving stress, which can help with dentophobia. Meditation and deep breathing also work wonders. When you’re feeling anxious about going to the dentist, focus on your breathing by counting how many seconds it takes for each inhalation or exhalation before moving on to the next one. This technique helps you distract from what’s happening at the moment and will help you feel calmer.

Modern dental treatments are less-invasive and painless, resulting in quick delivery. So, don’t put off dental treatments. Speak to your dentist to overcome the fear and anxiety.

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