Just because we’re adults doesn’t mean we’re exempt from anxiety over going to the dentist. And to varying degrees, most of us feel at least some apprehension about sitting down in the dentist chair from time to time.
The instinct to avoid pain is perfectly understandable. But, if that instinct is keeping you from your regular dental cleanings and exams, it can also do a disservice to your long-term oral health. Regular dental visits are much more comfortable—and less intrusive than they used to be. It’s time to put your fears to rest.
Why Are Some People Afraid of the Dentist?
If you have some anxiety about the dentist office, you’re not alone. As many as three out of four American adults experience some level of dental fear, and between 9 and 15 percent of us let that fear cause us to miss dental appointments.
The fear of pain keeps many people out of the dentist’s chair for a number of reasons. Whether it’s due to misrepresentations in the media or the memory of a bad childhood experience, in the years before modern dentistry, regular exams were not quite as comfortable.
For others, embarrassment over the state of one’s teeth can trigger anxiety, along with discomfort at the physical closeness that a dentist visit can require. Unfortunately, without your dentist office’s regular attention, the state of your teeth isn’t going to improve.
And for those with severe anxiety or dental phobia, the feeling of being out of control (like sitting down in a rollercoaster) can be a real barrier to dental care.
The causes of dental anxiety are varied, and so are their results. Some anxiety is normal, but if it’s keeping you from going to the dentist, it needs to be addressed, or your dental health can suffer.
Why Are Regular Check-Ups So Important?
Regardless of the anxiety they can cause, regular dental visits (for people with healthy teeth and gums, twice a year, and sometimes more for those with any issues) are imperative to your long-term oral and overall health.
At your regular cleaning, office professionals will clear plaque and tartar from your teeth that even the most diligent home brushing cannot remove. Without this removal, plaque will build over time and solidify into tartar.
Your dentist will also be able to detect underlying issues with simple X-rays, and can address new or existing cavities before they progress. They’ll search for indicators of gum disease, which can also negatively affect the rest of your body. And along with oral health, your dentist looks for signs that can affect your overall health, such as issues with your neck, lymph nodes, and throat.
How We Make Your Visit as Comfortable as Possible
At Dr. Lordo’s office, our first priority is making sure you feel comfortable, confident, and encouraged. Our professionals are happy to go over every step of your visit with you, and won’t rush you along. With state-of-the-art equipment and procedures your visit will be as comfortable as possible, and we’ll help you determine a course of treatment that best suits your needs.