NERVOUS DENTAL PATIENTS
ARE YOU A NERVOUS DENTAL PATIENT? WE CAN HELP
We understand that many individuals put off dental appointments, even when experiencing pronounced discomfort or pain in their teeth or gums, due to a high level of anxiety or apprehension regarding dental treatment.
Please understand that you are not alone in feeling anxious, scared or phobic about dental treatment.
At Envisage we are fully experienced and qualified to deal with nervous patients. We’ve discovered that when given proper respect, and control over their treatment, anxious patients experience a remarkable turnaround in their ability to receive dental treatment on a regular basis.
Early Dentist Fears
We usually find these initial fears can be often traced back to an early, traumatic experience in the dental environment, normally at a very young age.
We also find patients may have anxiety surrounding a number of specific issues such as:
Feeling a loss of control when laying in the chair
Any pain or discomfort during treatment
Embarrassment over how they feel the condition of their teeth have become
Having to get an injection/fear of needles
Unease with certain noises or sensations
Ultimately though, the source of every patient’s anxiety is entirely unique to them, and this is how we approach the initial appointment.
By discussing these issues directly with your dentist rather than avoiding them, you are taking your first steps towards overcoming them.
Managing Dental Anxiety
Some patients may find it easier to have a structured approach to attending their first appointment, as it is difficult for them to explain the source of their anxiety once they are in the surgery.
If you are nervous we will give you our “Handle Me With Care” form, which can be printed, filled out at home, and brought with you to your first appointment. This helps us discuss your specific fears more effectively.
WHAT WILL HAPPEN AT MY FIRST APPOINTMENT?
At your first appointment we will simply have a chat, get to know you and find out why you have come to see us. Usually we don't carry out any treatment at your first appointment, unless you specifically request otherwise.
This can be a relief to patients who feel they may be overloaded with information on their first visit. We normally carry out a simple check up, using nothing more than a small mirror and probe. We might possibly take an x-ray, but again only if you feel fully comfortable doing so.
By fully examining the inside of your mouth at the start, we can best inform you how to proceed in order to get your mouth back to its optimum health.
We will discuss all options available to you to deal with specific issues, and ensure you are fully informed and understand why these options are best suited to you.
Only then will we move forward with any treatment required, and at a speed that makes you feel most comfortable and in control.
CONSULTATION FORM FOR NERVOUS PATIENTS
This is the contents of the form we offer anyone who is anxious about their initial contact with a dentist. They are asked to circle any of the options below that reflect their fears of dental treatment. These are then discussed and a plan is drawn up before any treatment is undertaken.
- I need to have a chat with you first, outside the dentist chair.
- I have not been to the dentist for a long time, and I feel worried about what you will say about my teeth and my oral hygiene.
- I’m very anxious about injections.
- I feel out of control in the dental chair – is there anything you can do to put me into control?
- I have an extreme problem with being tipped back in the dental chair.
- I’m worried about feeling pain during treatment.
- I hate the noise of dental instruments.
- I am afraid of gagging or choking during treatment.
- I need to know that you will stop when I give a pre-agreed “stop” signal.
- I feel unable to give a stop signal and need to know that we will take frequent breaks or that you will stop if you sense that I’m uncomfortable or in pain.
- Please tell me about the treatment options and the ways these can be carried out.
- It would help me if you would explain to me what you are doing and why.
- I am worried that I may have a serious medical emergency while having treatment.
- I have health problems that we need to discuss.