Dental fear, or dental anxiety, is something that impacts a lot of people. Depending on the severity, it may cause you to avoid going to the dentist regularly. This can lead to severe dental problems down the road. At Esthetic Dental Solutions, Dr. Angie Gribble Hedlund, a dentist in Alpharetta, GA, offers sedation dentistry and other solutions to help handle your dental anxiety.
What is Dental Fear?
Fear of the dentist impacts a wide variety of people. It can be triggered by the sound of the drill, needles and other dental instruments, or just the overall environment of the dental office. The level of anxiety can occur on a spectrum. Some people may only have issues with certain procedures while others may not be able to bring themselves to go into the office at all.
The biggest problem with dental fear is when people avoid regular dental care because of it. Regular dental cleaning and checkups are essential for your oral health. If you’re avoiding the dentist completely, it can lead to severe dental problems, such as gum disease or teeth falling out due to decay.
Sedation Dentistry for Dental Fear
Though we always try to offer a comfortable atmosphere and a bond with our patients, sometimes that’s not enough for severe dental fear. That’s why we have multiple forms of sedation dentistry at Esthetic Dental Solutions. These help to treat multiple severities of dental fear so that you can get the dental care you need.
First, we offer nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas. This takes effect within five minutes when you start to inhale the gas. It allows you to stay relaxed throughout the procedure, but you’re still alert and able to answer questions if need be. The gas wears off almost as fast as it takes effect, so you’ll be able to drive yourself to and from your procedure.
We also offer oral sedation. This is given in the form of a prescribed pill. It’s taken about an hour or so before the procedure. While it doesn’t put you to sleep, it makes you relaxed enough that you might fall asleep during your treatment. The effect lasts a few hours after the procedure, so you’ll need someone to drive you to and from your appointment. You may not remember a lot of the procedure.
As an added precaution to sedation, we’ll use a local anesthetic to numb the area we’re treating. You won’t have to feel anything that’s going on, in addition to being relaxed from sedation. There may be numbness in your mouth for a few hours after the treatment.
For those patients whose dental anxiety is triggered by needles, we offer The Wand® anesthesia. It’s extremely tiny, the size of a ballpoint pen, and there’s a small needle at the tip. This gives the patient a controlled amount of anesthesia before the local anesthetic is administered. The area is already numb before the needle needs to be used.
Taking On Dental Anxiety at Your Alpharetta, Georgia, Dentist
Let us help you ease your fears so you can get proper dental care. Call us or schedule an appointment online.