Dental Phobia

Dentist's hands holding teeth modelLots of people suffer with a sense of uneasiness at the dentist. For some, it’s intense enough to be classed as dental phobia. One of the biggest problems for dental phobics in the past was that their phobia was dismissed as fear. People thought that everybody was afraid of the dentist and nobody liked a visit to their local dentist. The dental practices themselves were never designed to be welcoming or to make patients feel comfortable. Maybe patients believed It was just something we all had to do at some point.

Many people who suffer from dentophobia do not realise themselves that their condition can be treated. Instead, they develop their own coping strategies, which normally involve avoiding dental work and hoping that their teeth can look after themselves. This can lead to inevitable problems. Identifying, diagnosing and talking about a phobia is the first step to overcoming it. Many dentists, such as Joe Bhat also have modern ways to relax patients and make their dental experience as pain and stress-free as possible.

Calming options

One option for many patients with dental phobia is conscious sedation. For more complex dental treatments some dentists, such as Joe Bhat may suggest that patients have a more controlled way of keeping relaxed and comfortable during the surgical stages of dental procedures.

Conscious sedation is different from a general anaesthetic because patients will remain alert enough to respond to simple instructions, however most patients will remember almost nothing about their procedure. To achieve conscious sedation, a carefully controlled amount of sedative is delivered through a vein in the arm or hand steadily for as long as the procedure takes.

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Oral sedation

Depending on the total dose given, oral sedation can range from minimal to moderate. For minimal sedation, many dentists such as Joe Bhat will offer patients a pill. This drug is in the same family as Valium and it’s usually taken about an hour before the procedure. The pill makes patients drowsy, although they are still awake. A larger dose may be given to produce moderate sedation. Some patients become groggy enough from moderate oral sedation to actually fall asleep during the procedure.