Does the idea of attending a dental check-up fill you with dread?
As many as 4 in 5 dental patients report having some kind of anxiety relating to seeing their dental team. But how do you identify if there may be something more going on than a simple feeling of unease?
Here are some symptoms to keep an eye out for when it comes to seeing your dentist Sydney, as well as the best advice on how to cope with extreme dental phobias.
3 signs you have a dental phobia
Even if it is detrimental to your health, the first thing that someone who has dental aversion will do is push the appointment back multiple times.
If an issue keeps coming up that you cannot avoid, it’s worth considering if it is a real reason to delay the appointment or if you are making it a reason to delay the appointment. Remember, if you avoid dental check-ups, it can make dental work that is needed in the future more invasive.
If you have an issue with a dental check-up, it may not present until the day of the appointment.
Your heart rate may increase, you may feel dizzy, you may have sweaty palms, and you may feel faint for no reason. These are physical symptoms of a panic attack, and you need to seek help from someone as soon as you can.
Accelerated breathing is another symptom, as is trembling and feeling pins and needles in your feet and hands.
Interestingly, in the days before the appointment, if you have headaches, stomach pain or issues with going to the toilet, these can also be a physical sign that you are more than a little bit worried about that upcoming appointment.
There are many psychological reactions that you may have as well.
For instance, if you have booked a dental appointment and you become overly fixated on it, thinking about it all the time, this can point to anxiety. In a similar vein, if you worry that you are going to be ‘told off’ or yelled at about the condition of your teeth, this can also be a sign of anxiety.
Moving on to a mixture of the physical and the psychological, if you are having nightmares or are having problems getting a good night’s sleep in the lead-up to an appointment, this can also signify that you are very anxious. You may also feel depressed or detached in the days before the appointment, which is not normal.
Finding a dental team
Luckily, dental teams have become a lot more understanding when it comes to helping those who have dental phobias. And the majority will be able to offer sedation dentistry should you need it.
However, many people who have dental phobias may be able to combat their concerns by simply voicing their worries to their dental team. In some cases, this can be enough to help the patient feel understood and free from harm.
But it is always best to approach a dental team that is experienced at caring for people who have dental phobias.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.