Fear of the dentist is extremely common. Parents and children, alike, are prone to feeling fear or anxiety at the prospect of going to the dentist. Without adequate dental care, oral health suffers substantially, which leads to decreases in quality of life and overall health.
Is it possible to alleviate dental anxiety?
How Common Is Dental Anxiety in Children?
Depending on the age of a child, dental anxiety can be as common as 1 in every 3 children. Dental anxiety can be brought on by many different things but is unfortunately common in dental offices targeted specifically for children and general dental offices alike.
The Heart of Dental Anxiety
Dental anxiety most often comes from fear of the unknown and passed down fear from parents. Parents who have their own dental anxieties are more likely to have children with dental anxiety than parents who visit the dentist regularly without fear. Preparation and discussion are both extremely important to make sure that children understand there is nothing to fear from going to the dentist.
Anxiety Alongside Special Needs
Anxiety frequently accompanies patients with special needs, and dental anxiety can be common for dental experiences with children who have a disability. From concerns about wheelchair accessibility to unpleasant sensations brought about by sensory disorders, dental care can be frightening for children with special needs.
What Helps With Dental Anxiety?
Fortunately, there are techniques parents can use to help ease their children’s dental fear. These include relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing, as well as making sure that your child’s dental visit is treated with care and respect. To make sure that your child’s fears are allayed as effectively as possible, consider each of the following.
At Dentistry for Young People, we believe in “gentle dentistry.” Gentle dentistry believes that pediatric dentistry should reflect the same care and consideration parents offer their own children. At our gentle pediatric dental practice in Statesville, NC, we strive to create an atmosphere that is fun, safe, and welcoming.
Dentistry is essential to maintaining oral health and overall health. We believe that one of the best ways to prepare your child for regular dental appointments is to build trust between your family and our practice. Children often develop fear in response to being held down, treated unkindly, or hurt while at the dentist. We strive to build trust by providing plenty of opportunities to communicate, assert your needs, and build a safety net for your dental procedures.
Offering Sedation Dentistry
If children continue to struggle with sensory needs or persistent fear of the dentist, sedation dentistry can help alleviate some of the fears associated with dental visits. Nitrous oxide is a safe, effective pain relief medication that allows children to relax prior to a procedure, without putting the child to sleep altogether. This gentle form of sedation can help children feel safer and more at ease while undergoing a dental procedure.
Pediatric Dentists and Dental Anxiety
Fear of the dentist is common in children. Our pediatric dentist in Statesville, NC believes in the power of trust and kindness in dentistry. We offer dental services in a calm atmosphere that encourages feelings of comfort and safety for our patients and their parents. Pediatric dentists work alongside young, vulnerable populations, and have a responsibility to respect the needs and decisions of parents and patients.