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Glendale, AZ
A 28-year-old female asked:

severe fear and anxiety of being in a dentist office. is there anything to help?

6 doctor answers15 doctors weighed in
Dr. Sandra Eleczko
Dentistry 36 years experience
Perhaps sedation : You are not alone. Many people fear going to the dentist. First find a dentist that you can trust and build a relationship with. Dentists have options that can you with your anxieties. Nitrous (gas) or sedatives can be used to help you get through the procedures. In my office I use an all natural relaxation system called nucalm. See if you can find a local dentist who uses this. It is great.
Dr. Michael Stern
Dentistry 49 years experience
Search for help: In our office we offer nitrous oxide analgesia, and additional oral medication as needed to aid anxious patients. A calming reassurance that every effort will be made to assure patient comfort also helps our patients, as well as a prearranged stop signal that will allow us to interrupt or stop treatment if patients desire. If all else fails, we refer to a specially trained colleague.
Dr. Stephen Gordon
Dentistry 43 years experience
Yes!: Call the dentist & tell them exactly how you feel & ask them for a "visit" type appointment where you just go in, meet the dentist and staff, tour the office, discuss your concerns. Since absolutely no treatment will be performed you can go with an open mind not concerned about the actual dental treatment and I am sure you will feel better about actually becoming a patient. Good success to you.
Dr. James Goodpaster
Dentistry 29 years experience
There are many ways that we can assist in reducing your anxiety during procedures but it is best to have a meeting to discuss what your treatment needs are and how best to help you overcome your anxiety.
May 25, 2013
Dr. Scott Bobbitt
Dentistry 32 years experience
Great advice, Dr. Gordon! Since fears are irrational and personal, knowledge of reality is power! A "pre-examination" meeting is just the thing to make the patient's experience one based on the rational information instead of "worry."
May 25, 2013
Dr. Lance Panarello
Dentistry 24 years experience
You do need to go in: Sedation dentistry may be for you. You still need to go into the office but if your dentist does sedation you can go to "sleep" and wake up and be done your dentistry. You also may need to find an office that caters to people that are afraid. Either option should work for you. Just convey what your fears are and the right office should be able to help you.
Dr. Gary Sandler
Dentistry 54 years experience
This actually works!: I have been practicing for many years and occasionally have a patient who is extremely apprehensive & holds off treatment for years 1. You must commit to taking that 1st step. 2. Get a recommendation from someone you trust. 3. Explain to the office your concerns when you call. 4. Discuss your fears with the dentist. 5. Ask to go slow and be gentle. 6. Give him\her a chance.
Dr. William Jakavick
Cosmetic Dentistry 37 years experience
Dental anxiety: Many people experience sever dental phobia and as a result may end up with the need for a great deal of dental treatment. Many patients experience relief with anti-anxiety medications such as valium or Ativan (lorazepam) and need a driver to take them to their appt. There are also sleep dentists who can provide twilight sleep up to general anesthesia and will do as much as possible to minimize # of visits.

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Get expert help: There are many worthwhile meds that can facilitate improved social interaction w/ less anxiety. It takes more than meds though- you need a plan, you prob need expert counsel, & most especially u need lots of opportunity to "practice" being social. Do things with a social context- regularly! and, it may require >1med; getting the right med doses & multi-drug regimen is crucial & expert md is needed.

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Last updated Nov 27, 2017

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