Many phobias share the blame for keeping about half of Americans away from regular dental care. Let’s talk about these fears and get past them.
Many phobias share the blame for keeping about half of Americans away from regular dental care. Feeling out of control, needles, embarrassment, infection, and cost are chief among them. Sometimes, talking about a fear defuses it. Modern dentistry may be different from the kind of dentistry people expect.
Begin with the loss of control. Many dentists are sensitive to the emotions of their patients. It is alright to interview a dentist as one would a contractor. When showing up for an initial appointment, the dentist will ask many questions and ask the new patient to sign forms. At the same time, the patient may evaluate the dentist. Only stay with a dentist who is able to both help you and make you feel good about yourself.
No More Excuses! Your Dentist is Waiting
Some people feel embarrassed when they have not seen a dentist for a long time. This is very counterproductive. Oral health is a mission for dentists and hygienists. They want to help people in need. Your condition, no matter how uncomfortable or ill-appearing, will make them feel useful. If the dentist or hygienist seems judgmental, find a different team.
The average dental office practices a high level of infection control. Ask the dental assistants, receptionist, hygienist or dentist for specifics about their office. They will take pride in showing off their infection control technique. If the office does not seem clean, or if the staff does not wish to share information, perhaps it is time to exercise the right to choose a new office.
Dentistry is under financial pressure much the same as other businesses. The cost of dental supplies has risen dramatically in recent years as has the cost of staff, real estate and utilities. Many dentists invest in expensive, ultramodern equipment such as digital x-ray and CAD – CAM machines that create crowns from digital photographs. In response to this pressure, dental practices try to improve convenience for their patients. Many work with patients to help them qualify for low- or no-interest loans to cover extensive dental treatment. Many patients who are not eligible for a loan or even a credit card may be eligible for state-sponsored care like Medicaid. Some institutions offer sliding scale payments or free care for those who apply.
Needles? Sorry, needles may be unavoidable. However, many dentists will offer medication that will take the edge off.