Dentist office jitters, dental fear and anxiety, or just plain old dentist phobia. Whatever you call it, if you suffer from stress and anxiety at the thought of going to the dentist — or worse, have put off treatment in the past — you’re not alone. Millions of people in the United States and around the world suffer from the condition officially known as dentophobia or odontophobia.
The good news is that there are solutions available to help you move past your fears so that you can get the dental care you need. Dr. Scott Young and our team of dentists provide sedation dentistry at our office in The Woodlands, Texas, to help our nervous and anxious patients get access to the dental services they need.
What causes dental fear and anxiety?
Fear of pain and misconceptions about particular dental services are among the top reasons why many people avoid the dentist. Recent studies have found that at least a third or more of adults in the United States put off going to the dentist out of fear or anxiety.
In addition to concerns about pain, other fears include the smell of chemicals, the sound of the drills, the dental chair, and even the thought of having to keep their mouth open for a long period of time. Some people are just terrified by the entire experience in general.
The irony is that in most cases, putting off a visit to the dentist only makes the problem worse and possibly more difficult to treat in the future. But for people with extreme dental anxiety, even the thought of a simple preventive dental exam and routine cleaning can fill them with dread. If this is you or someone in your family, rest assured that you’re not alone. You have options available to treat your dental anxiety.
How sedation dentistry can help
Depending on your anxiety levels and the type of treatment you need, there are options available to help numb the level of pain or pressure you’ll experience and to help you relax and keep you comfortable during treatment. Sedation is available in pill form, inhalation (nitrous oxide), or IV (intravenous) medication.
The levels of sedation range from light (where you’re numb and comfortable but awake and fully conscious) to general anesthesia (where you’re completely asleep for the procedure). If you require more than light sedation but don’t want (or need) general anesthesia, you may also choose moderate to deep sedation (you’re mostly conscious but in a deeper state of relaxation that allows you to “zone out” during treatment).
At your consultation, Dr. Young will discuss your options with you and help you find the best solution for your situation and needs.
For more information about sedation dentistry and the options available to you, contact us today by calling 832-610-3123 to schedule an appointment. You can also request an appointment at our The Woodlands, Texas, office by using our convenient online booking tool.