Dental Fear? We Provide Patient Comfort In Many Ways!

Posted on Oct 18, 2017 by William J. Claiborne, DDS MS

I have a friend whose wife is a notorious backseat driver, and she freely admits it. Her husband, actually a good driver, has become used to her ‘guidance’ when they’re on the road. She explains it like this: “When I see brake lights suddenly appear in front of us as we’re going seventy miles an hour, I don’t know that his foot is on the brake pedal, ready to respond. All I know is the urge inside of me to warn him. He knows I can’t help it.”

I agree. We all react to certain things automatically. When some people see a spider for instance, they may become fearful and want to flee. Other people react to seeing a spider by rolling up a newspaper, ready to eliminate the intruder.

When it comes to dental fear, different people have different levels. Some of our patients are very relaxed in our office, from the moment they walk in and throughout treatment. Others are fine until they are seated in the treatment chair. Still, others are nervous and uneasy the entire time.

Periodontal (gum) disease is the result of an accumulation of oral bacteria. It is also the leading cause of adult tooth loss. As a Periodontist, I find that most individuals have developed gum disease because they were too afraid of having regular dental care. Many avoid going to the dentist for years, only ‘giving in’ when something becomes so painful they can no longer delay treatment.

Dental fear and anxiety are often the result of an unfortunate experience in a dentist’s office that made the person feel out of control and trapped. I know this can go deep. I’ve heard patients tell how a dentist continued to work on them even when they’d told him or her they were not numb. I’ve heard patients tell me about being held down in a treatment chair as a child. And, I’ve heard patients tell me they have no idea where their fears came from, yet smells and sounds trigger sweating or a more rapid heartbeat.

If you experience these feelings associated with dental visits, there is nothing ‘wrong’ with you. It’s likely your individual response to something that makes you feel vulnerable because you’ve either heard people relay experiences of discomfort or have experienced it yourself, it’s normal to anticipate pain – sometimes even before being touched.

Get pampered in our Reception area.

Perceived pain can be just as real to some people as actual pain.

In our office, patient comfort is a priority at every visit. We have even designed our reception area to pamper you from the moment you enter. Patients in this area can enjoy a selection of gourmet coffees, cable television and WIFI connection. The seating is comfortable and our front office staff are attentive to your needs.

We offer a private consultation room for patients as well. In this room, we can discuss your treatment and answer your questions in a comfortable setting. This allows patients to become better informed about their treatment needs and options versus communicating while they are seated in a treatment chair.

Enjoy beautiful, relaxing views from our surgical suite.

Our surgical suite offers a rather unique setting for a Periodontal office. A large window provides beautiful mountain views, very soothing to our patients. In addition, we offer oral sedation as well as I.V. sedation (twilight sleep) for most procedures, if desired.

Oral sedation is a pill that helps patients relax. It also has an amnesiac effect, leaving most with little or no memory of treatment afterward. I.V. sedation places the patient in a deeper sedative state, also erasing memory of the procedure. It is administered by a doctor of anesthesiology for optimal comfort and safety. With both, patients are monitored with advanced safety equipment throughout treatment.

Our entire staff provide a unified team, each bringing a sincere level of compassion and commitment to excellent care. While the doctors involved in your care are top-notch, I must admit that our staff are the pros at making our patients feel truly pampered.

When patients realize that our goal is to provide exceptional care in TOTAL comfort, they relax. When they experience this, they relax even more. When they experience this more than once, a sense of trust is born. When patients trust us, they feel they no longer need to avoid dental care. Like everyone, fearful patients desire a healthy, confident smile. Once the obstacle of fear is removed, their ability to achieve that is greatly heightened.

If you or someone you know has fear that has prevented needed or desired dental care, schedule a consultation appointment. This will take place in our private consultation room. Here, we can discuss your needs and concerns and have your questions answered thoroughly. From there, you can determine what pace is best for you.

Call 828-274-9440 to learn more. Our friendly telephone staff will make you feel good from the very beginning!

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