Dental anxiety is very common. Most people experience some level of dental anxiety, and a significant number of people are so afraid of going to the dentist that they avoid getting needed dental care. Fortunately, we have many options to help you have a better experience if you have dental anxiety.
More Comfortable Anesthesia
For many people, the fear of the dentist begins with the discomfort of even the initial anesthesia shot. Anesthesia is supposed to protect you from discomfort, so why does it hurt? The reason is that the anesthesia is acidic, so it’s a little like injecting lemon juice.
But with the buffered anesthesia we offer, you won’t experience the sting of anesthesia. As a side benefit, the anesthesia will take effect faster, so you won’t have to wait around to get numb. This means there’s less waiting time for your anxiety to increase.
NuCalm Relaxation Dentistry
For people who have other concerns about their visit to the dentist, we offer NuCalm. NuCalm is a relaxation tool that simply shuts off your body’s anxiety system. It’s about 95% effective, and it requires no drugs, injections or pills.
NuCalm allows us to control a part of your body’s involuntary nervous system, known as the autonomic nervous system, the one that controls anxiety. Using neuroscience we can regulate your brain waves so they stay in a relaxed state similar to deep meditation or resting at the edge of sleep. It will increase the release of relaxing endorphins so that you naturally don’t get worried.
Because it involves no drugs, there are no drug side effects. It takes effect in five minutes and wears off instantly, so you never feel drugged.
Sedation Dentistry Options
For people who are interested in more traditional medical approaches to overcoming anxiety, we offer three different types of sedation dentistry.
Nitrous oxide (“laughing gas”) is a quick, easy, and comfortable approach to sedation. You will inhale a mix of nitrous oxide and oxygen so that you achieve a relaxed but awake state. Nitrous isn’t a strong form of anxiety relief, but it does help control pain, too, if that’s part of your fear.
Oral sedation is a pill you will take to help you relax. Depending on the nature of your anxiety, we may recommend that you take the pill before you come to the office or take it in our lobby. Either way, you’ll be relaxed and at ease during the entire procedure, but not usually asleep.
For people with extreme levels of anxiety, we offer IV sedation. IV sedation requires the assistance of a nurse anesthetist to monitor you during the procedure, but it allows you to be completely unconscious during treatment.
Don’t Let Anxiety Keep You from the Dentist
There’s no reason to be ashamed of dental anxiety. It’s very common, and understandable. But you shouldn’t let your dental anxiety keep you from getting the dental care you need to keep healthy and keep your teeth.
To learn more about overcoming dental anxiety in Tulsa, please call (918) 528-3330 today for an appointment with Dr. Hodges at élan by Dr. Meghan Hodges.