6 Ways to Ease Your Nerves at the Dentist

January 15, 2020

Closeup portrait young terrified girl woman scared at dentist visit, siting in chair, covering her mouth, doesn't want dental procedure, drilling, tooth extraction, isolated clinic office backgroundIf you feel nervous about your upcoming dental visit, you’re not alone. Many people share the same feelings.

The good news is that enough people have anxiety about dental work that most dentists are used to helping patients through these types of feelings.

If you’re someone who tends to get worked up before an appointment, try these 6 tips for calming your nerves.

  1. Let Your Dentist Know: If you’re nervous about a dental procedure, it’s not a bad idea to inform your dentist about your anxieties. Knowing that you’re feeling anxious, your dentist may take extra time and care to explain the procedure and make sure you’re comfortable.
  2. Avoid Caffeine and Sugar: Before your appointment, avoid drinking coffee or sugary foods and drinks. Since they can increase your heart rate, drinking these can add to your anxiety. Instead, try drinking plenty of water or even a soothing cup of caffeine-free herbal tea.
  3. Give Yourself Time: Plan to have a calm day before and after your procedure. Having to be somewhere immediately after your appointment can pile on a lot of stress, so try and keep your responsibilities for the day to a minimum. You will feel more relaxed knowing that after your procedure, you can just go home and rest.
  4. Practice Deep Breathing: Breathing deeply can have a profound impact on your mood. When you feel your heart and your mind start to race, try taking a few deep, slow belly breaths.
  5. Make it to Your Dental Appointments: If you’re someone who has feelings of fear and anxiety surrounding the dentist, your first instinct may be to avoid the dental chair at all costs. But, believe it or not, visiting the dentist every 6 months can actually help ease your anxiety. You will be more aware about what’s going on with your teeth so you don’t encounter any surprises. Plus, preventative care may prevent the need for more serious procedures.
  6. Ask Your Dentist to Explain: Knowing what to expect can help ease some of your anxiety. Many dentists prefer to explain the procedures to all their patients, since it tends to have a calming effect.

At Kip Dental and Orthodontics, we always make sure our patients feel safe and comfortable during their appointments. Of course, if you’re getting a procedure like a dental fillings or root canal, your dentist will make sure to numb your mouth so you don’t feel any pain.