A few years ago, I realized that I was thinking about dental care all wrong. Instead of listening carefully to my dentist and making the necessary changes, I assumed that he was ultimately responsible for making sure that my teeth stayed healthy. Unfortunately, I developed a few serious cavities because I failed to properly brush and floss my teeth, and I knew that it was my fault. I decided to start taking notes at my dental checkups and carefully abiding by the dentist's orders. The difference was almost miraculous. This blog is all about working with your dentist to improve your result.
Dental anxiety is the fear of visiting the dentist. This is different from an anxiety disorder, although it's certainly possible for someone to experience dental anxiety while also being affected by an anxiety disorder. Your anxiety might be preventing you from replacing your missing teeth with dental implants. How can you approach this delicate situation?
The Rational Approach
The benefits of replacing your missing teeth with dental implants can be life-changing. It transforms your smile, helping to overcome any social embarrassment that might be an issue in your life while also improving the overall functionality of your teeth. It will be easier to chew once the implants have been installed. While this can be a rational way to consider the procedure, anxieties are not always rational.
Talk to Your Dentist
For some people affected by anxiety, knowledge is power. Exhaustive information about a situation that might be triggering your anxieties can help you to overcome these anxieties. Draw up a list of questions to ask your dentist. You may wish to know the precise details of the procedure, with no holds barred. Having said that, this might be unwise for some people, as knowing the specific details of a medical procedure can in fact increase their anxieties. However, some may find this reassuring before going into a procedure.
Sedation Options at the Dentist's Surgery
Although pain relief is an obvious necessity for dental implants surgery, additional medication can be beneficial in your case. Talk to your dentist about conscious sedation. This is more like a relaxant as opposed to something that will completely sedate you. For this option, you inhale the sedation agent (nitrous oxide is commonly used), then you will be in a state of complete relaxation. You will still be awake during the procedure, but the calming effect of the sedation agent will neutralize your anxiety. In extreme cases, dissociative sedation can be utilized. You will remain awake, but calm, and you will have minimal recollection of the procedure afterward.
Sedation Options Prior to the Dentist's Surgery
In cases of extreme anxiety, your dentist might provide you with a sedative to take before you even get to their surgery. This will be a mild central nervous system depressant tranquilizer and can be helpful if you suspect that your anxiety might cause an issue during your appointment. You will need to have someone drive you to and from the dentist's office but this can be practical as the person can offer you moral support, too.
Anxieties can affect your daily life, but they shouldn't stop you from replacing your missing teeth with dental implants. Contact a dentist for more information regarding the dental implant procedure.