Suffering from Dental Phobia: Top 4 Tips for Overcoming Your Fear

The very thought of visiting a dentist may make people quake in their boots.

Are you one among them?

If yes, then you are probably suffering from dental phobia. According to Peter Milgrom, Director at the Dental Fears Research Clinic at the University of Washington, 5 to 8 percent Americans avoid dentists out of fear. About 20 percent experience anxiety to a level where they will visit a dentist only when it’s absolutely unavoidable.

Lying on a chair in an unfamiliar room filled with strange, sharp dental tools, which make loud and unpleasant noises can make even the bravest people cringe in horror. However, regular dental check-ups are essential in order to maintain your teeth and gums. Skimping on check-ups can affect your oral health negatively.

Don’t you wish to have an immaculately white gleaming smile? Don’t let your phobia get in the way of achieving it.

Here are a few tips that can help calm your jittery nerves during a dental visit.

1.Get Your Doubts Cleared Beforehand

If you have a lot of qualms about your dental treatment, get all your questions answered well in time, unless you’re okay with the appointment turning into a harrowing affair.

Ask your dentist questions about the treatment procedure, the time it will take, the overall cost, the precautions you will have to take, and what to expect as your teeth and gums are worked upon.

Being familiar with the essential aspects of the treatment beforehand will thoroughly prepare you for it. Moreover, by being aware of your concerns, the dentist will also be able to manage and address your fears in the best possible manner.

Discussing your concerns with the dentist and being honest about them will help minimize your fear greatly.

2.Listen to Soothing Music

The whirring noises coming from dental instruments can intimidate a lot of patients. Listening to soothing music during the dental procedure may help calm your nerves by drowning out noises from the dental equipment. With no pesky background noises, you will be able to feel more relaxed. Moreover, it will help ease your apprehensions and foster patience during the treatment. So, make sure to take your music with you on your next dental appointment.

Apart from listening to music, you can also consider practicing relaxation techniques before and during the appointment. Breathing exercises can help you manage your dental phobia.

3.Be Optimistic

Dental treatment methods may have been excruciating in the olden days. However, modern treatment methods are starkly different. To minimize pain, dentists offer oral sedation as well as nitrous oxide (which is inhaled) when using needles. This has become easy owing to better ways of administering anesthetics and usage of advanced dental technologies.

In fact, modern dentistry offers a plethora of options including computer-assisted design technology (CAD) and thinner veneers to make a patient feel as comfortable as possible. Try keeping a positive attitude in order to reduce anxiety during the treatment.

4.Invest Substantial Time When Choosing a Dentist

You don’t want to exacerbate fears about dental procedures, which is why it is important to choose the right dentist. If you think you will not be able to handle the pain after the treatment, discuss it with your dentist well in advance. Many dentists recommend nitrous oxide, sedation or anti-anxiety medicine for extremely nervous patients. Find a dentist who is willing to offer these options and work with you keeping in mind your concerns.

Only when you choose a dentist whom you are comfortable with will you be able to have a smooth-sailing dental treatment experience. If possible, make sure your first visit involves a simple procedure such as teeth-cleaning. This will enable you to build a healthy working relationship with your dentist before going in for a more difficult dental procedure.

Invest a significant amount of time when looking for a dentist. Ask friends, relatives, and colleagues as they may be able to recommend a reputable dentist. The Internet can also be a brilliant source to avail relevant information. For example, if you’re looking for a dentist in Boston, you can search online for General dentistry in Boston. This will provide you with a list of dentists who practice in your area.


Skipping dental visits can get in the way of maintaining your pearly whites. In fact, doing so may lead to advanced dental problems, which is why it’s best to address the root of your dental anxiety right away. The aforementioned tips can help you do so. If you wish to keep your smile beautiful and healthy for life, going for regular dental check-ups is essential. Don’t let anxiety prevent you from seeking the necessary preventative care. Make sure to be honest about your dental phobia with your dentist from the beginning. Overcoming your dental fears will enable you to keep your teeth in tip-top shape.