Dental anxiety is a common problem for many people. In fact, according to the American Dental Association, about 1 in 10 Americans avoid going to the dentist because of fear and anxiety. This can lead to serious dental problems down the road. If you are one of the many people who suffer from dental anxiety, don’t worry. While getting regular dental checkups is important for your oral health and overall wellness, it doesn’t have to be an uncomfortable experience. There are 5 natural ways to relieve your anxiety and have a successful dental visit!
1) Drink a Calming Tea
If stress and anxiety are your major dental phobias, a calming tea might be the perfect way to ease your nerves. Many teas can help you relax and reduce anxiety. The health benefits of tea include relaxation and soothing properties as well as aiding with digestion. Some of the most popular teas used for stress relief include chamomile, mint, ginger, lemon balm, and lavender.
2) Avoid Caffeine Before the Visit
Avoiding caffeine before the visit can help you relax. Caffeine is a stimulant, so it can lead to increased anxiety and make your mouth dry. Which can make the appointment uncomfortable.
Caffeine may also increase your risk of bruxism (grinding your teeth) by causing tension in the muscles in your face and jaw. Your dentist might find it difficult to do his or her job if you’re grinding while they work on you!
3) Eat a Well-Balanced Meal
Make sure to eat a good meal before your appointment. Instead of eating something heavy, eat a small amount of food that is not too calorically dense, over-sugared, or caffeinated. Try to avoid foods high in fiber and protein as these can cause gas and bloat. Also avoid spicy foods as these can irritate the stomach lining, causing nausea and vomiting when you’re at the dentist’s office.
4) Listen to Music During the Appointment
Listening to music can help you relax and distract yourself from the appointment. Music also helps you focus on the music instead of what is going on in your mouth, which can be a useful distraction for some people with dental anxiety. The sound waves emitted by music have been shown to cause relaxation in muscles, so bringing along headphones or a small speaker might be helpful if needed. This will also allow you to listen to any preferred tunes while keeping it private from others waiting around.
5) Finding a Friendly Dentist
Finding a dentist that is patient and understanding. When you’re a dental phobic, it can be difficult to explain how you feel about your relationship with the dentist. Even if you’re not sure what’s wrong or where your fear comes from, the dentist should take the time to listen and try to figure out what makes sense for you. The best way to find this kind of dentist is by talking with people who have already been there.
If you’re still feeling nervous about receiving dental treatments, don’t forget that it’s OK! We understand how stressful it can be but we also know what works best for each person. So if one way to relieve dental anxiety doesn’t help much, try another until something clicks. And remember: no matter how uncomfortable or anxious you feel when you walk into our office, we want to help make this experience as easy as possible for everyone involved!
Is it time for a dental hygiene appointment? Contact Hale Wellness Dental Studio today to discuss your needs!