Dentophobia, also known as dental anxiety or fear of the dentist, is a common condition that affects many people. It is estimated that up to 20% of adults suffer from some form of dental anxiety, with some cases being so severe that they avoid visiting the dentist altogether. This can lead to serious dental problems and even further exacerbate the fear of the dentist. In this blog, we will explore dentophobia and what can be done to manage it.
Symptoms of Dentophobia
Dentophobia can manifest in many ways, including physical symptoms such as sweating, increased heart rate, and difficulty breathing. Patients may also experience feelings of panic, dread, or anxiety leading up to a dental appointment or procedure. Some people may avoid going to the dentist altogether, even if they have a dental emergency or are experiencing significant pain.
Causes of Dentophobia
There are many potential causes of dentophobia, including previous negative experiences with dentists or dental procedures. Some patients may have a fear of needles, blood, or the sensation of being out of control. Others may have a fear of the pain associated with dental procedures or may be embarrassed about their teeth or gums.
Fortunately, there are many strategies that can help patients manage their dentophobia. One of the most effective ways is to communicate openly with your dentist or dental care provider about your fears and concerns. They can work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan that addresses your specific needs and concerns.
Patients may also benefit from relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or visualization exercises. Some people find it helpful to listen to music or wear noise- cancelling headphones during a procedure to distract themselves from the sounds of the dental equipment.
For more severe cases of dentophobia, medication may be prescribed to help alleviate anxiety and fear. However, it is important to discuss the potential risks and benefits of medication with your dentist or healthcare provider before beginning any new treatment.
In conclusion, dentophobia is a common condition that can have serious consequences for dental health. Fortunately, there are many strategies and treatments available to help patients manage their fears and receive the dental care they need. If you or someone you know is experiencing dentophobia, speak with your dentist or healthcare provider to develop a plan that works for you
Keeping this in mind a live video presentation was done on this topic “Dentophobia” at 17th ISPPD PG Convention (2020) in Jaipur, Rajasthan by Dr. Carrolene Langpoklakpam and Dr. Ramya JR, PG students in the Department of Pediatric and Preventive Dentistry, Santosh Deemed to be University and won the 1st prize for the same.