Does the thought of going to the dentist make you sick to your stomach? Are you scared of drills? Do you get nervous just thinking about it? If you’re someone who suffers from dental anxiety or phobia, one of the best things you can do is to find a dentist you’re comfortable with.
Finding A Dentist You Actually Like
Going to the dentist is consistently rated as one of the top phobias for the average American. There’s just something about opening up your mouth and giving someone permission to poke, drill and prod that’s uncomfortable. But just because you don’t like going to the dentist, doesn’t mean you can avoid it altogether. Good oral hygiene has an impact on your overall physical health and shouldn’t be taken lightly.
Most people are anxious about going to the dentist because (a) they don’t know what to expect, and (b) they don’t trust the person working in their mouth. If you want to have more pleasurable visits in the future, you need to find a dentist you like and trust. Here are some tips to help you do just that.
1. Ask Around For Referrals
The best thing you can do is ask people in your personal network for referrals. The good news is that most people go to the dentist on a semi-regular basis, so you’ll get plenty of suggestions. You may also have some people give you names of dentists to avoid, which is equally helpful.
If you ask enough people, you’ll begin to hear some of the same names emerge (both good and bad). Using this information, you can continue your search online and get a better idea of who is respected in your area.
2. Research Dentists Online
The internet is a fantastic tool for researching dentists because you get access to reviews, testimonials, and unbiased feedback. Your neighbor might have really positive things to say about their dentist, but if 75 percent of online reviews give that same dentist a one-star rating, then this is an indication that something isn’t right. The averages don’t lie.
3. Look For A Dentist Who Understands You
Finding a highly-rated dentist ensures you’re working with someone who knows what they’re doing, but what about all of the other factors that come into play? You need someone who has the right soft skills and will put your mind at ease.
Dental anxiety is a big issue for a lot of people. A dentist who fails to acknowledge the prevalence of anxiety issues, or brushes them off as insignificant, probably isn’t the right person for you. What you need is someone who offers services specifically designed to put your mind at ease. Dr. Rohini Agarwal of Definition Dental is a great example. She offers her clients nitrous oxide and oral sedation dentistry as a way of dealing with these issues. There are likely dental practices in your area that do the same.
4. Avoid Red Flags
Finally, you’ll want to avoid dentists who put up red flags. Specifically, avoid working with large dental chains that spend a lot of money on advertising. These practices often have quotas to meet and care more about getting you in and out than actually providing proper care.
Set Up a Consultation
Who says you have to form some long-term relationship with a dentist? You’re in control of your oral care and can move from one dentist to the next until you find one that makes you comfortable. To get this process rolling, set up consultations with two or three different dentists in your area and consider all of the options. You’ll know when you’ve found the right dentist for you.
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