Dental anxiety is a common reaction in some patients, whether they have had a bad experience with a dental procedure or not. However, in some people, this dental anxiety is so extreme that they avoid dental treatment all together. In these cases of extreme anxiety and avoidance of dental care, the patients teeth can suffer because they feel that going to the dentist is more uncomfortable than the pain they may be suffering. Many people suffer from dental problems more than they should because they are afraid of the dentists office. Their fear keeps them from seeking help and in turn their teeth and health suffer for it. In rare cases some people will ignore their dental problems for so long that they lose their teeth. Patients who suffer anxiety now have options to help them so that they don’t sacrifice their teeth at the expense of fear.
A new technique is now available which allows the severely distressed patient relief from the anxiety. It is what is known as sedation dentistry and it is offered by more and more dentists each year. Sedation dentistry is an option for patients who would otherwise never seek dental care due to their extreme anxiety. For mild anxiety, the dentist can offer the patient nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, to ease their fears. Patients suffering more severe anxiety can be offered a benzodiazapine, or sedative hypnotic pill which is taken prior to the office visit. The worst cases of anxiety can receive a form of sedation called twilight sleep, this allows the patient to sleep through the entire procedure.
Not all dentists provide sedation dentistry, but it is available from some who specialize in the field. Patients with severe dental anxiety should seek out these sedation dentists and receive dental care in a less stressful atmosphere. Sedation dentistry is the answer for all levels of dental anxiety because it eases the symptoms of anxiety that are the cause of patients avoiding dental visits. There is no longer a reason to neglect regular dental visits due to anxiety thanks to advancements in the dental field regarding sedation dentistry.