All over the world, the fear of going to the dentist is a well established and common phobia. So much, that is results in many google searches of “How to Overcome Your Fear of the Dentist.“
There’s just something about the idea of sitting in a chair and being unable to talk, while another person looms above you and drills holes in your teeth, that doesn’t feel like a convincing portrait of a fun afternoon.
While this fear is understandable, it’s well worth getting rid of for a whole variety of reasons. These range from your health and well-being to the straightforward, practical realities of dentistry in the 21st century.
5 Reasons to Overcome Your Fear of the Dentist
So, without further ado, here are some excellent reasons to overcome your fear of the dentist. It’s time to “bite the bullet,” and book the appointment you’ve been putting off. Plus, these tips will help you begin working to overcome your fear of the dentist!
1) Many procedures are far less intrusive these days than they used to be
One of the reasons why people often put off visits to the dentist for long periods is because they have an uncomfortable suspicion that they’re going to need some severe work done when they do visit.
The longer you go without a dental checkup, the likelier you will need to have a significant amount of work. The worry is the procedures you have to have done will be more severe and comprehensive.
All the same, it’s essential to keep in mind that many modern dental procedures are far less intrusive these days. Gone are the barbaric practices you see in horror movies. Even just in the relatively recent past, things have massively changed for the better.
Many implants, for example, can help stabilize your denture with far less fuss and less recovery time than conventional-sized implants. And procedures such as root canal are often over within one short visit.
Maybe your fear of the dentist has something to do with a traumatic visit you had as a child. Or, it’s possibly due to something you saw in a movie. Either way, there’s a good chance that you are working off an entirely outdated assumption of dentistry is like.
2) People will judge you on the state of your teeth.
We all know that it’s wrong to judge a book by its cover. People’s true worth has to do with their character and not with how well presented they are.
But still, the fact remains that people really will judge you on the state of your teeth. Probably more than virtually any other feature of your appearance.
Our teeth are always visible (in flashes) when we are socially interacting face-to-face with others. Poorly maintained teeth are typically seen as a sign of sloppiness, laziness, or uncleanliness. These are all traits that no one wants to have associated with them.
Overcoming your fear of the dentist and getting proper care can do wonders for your confidence as well. You may benefit from significantly improved reactions from the people you meet with on an everyday basis.
3) With modern dental anesthetics and best practices, the pain won’t be a significant factor.
Fear of pain is, obviously, one of the leading causes of an overall fear of visiting the dentist. However, few dental procedures these days involve a significant amount of pain at all – especially during the actual process itself.
The science of dental anesthetics has developed to a very high level. In all likelihood, you will not feel anything during your dental procedure. At most, you will feel a sharp, quick prick in your gun as the anesthetic is injected.
Of course, depending on the procedure you had done, you will experience some pain during the healing and recovery process. However, this is mostly at the level of a dull ache that will last for only a few days.
4) Your confidence and sense of well-being can improve dramatically when you’ve had your teeth fixed up.
If you’ve put off a dental visit for some time, it’s likely your teeth are not in the best shape. You are probably painfully aware of that fact every time you look in the mirror.
Whether it’s a matter of getting a chipped tooth fixed, a cavity filled in, or just a clean-up and polishing job is done courtesy of the dental hygienist, having your teeth “spruced up” can boost your sense of confidence and well-being dramatically.
If something is bothering you regularly, and you have the power to address it, you really should.
5) It’s good to get into the habit of confronting and overcoming your fears (for all sorts of reasons)
Plenty of psychologists would be happy to speak at great length of the benefits that come from confronting your fears and putting yourself “outside of your comfort zone.”
Whenever you have a fear that is significantly impacting your life, you can be sure that a lot of your emotional energy is tied up in that thing. When you do, therefore, confront and overcome that fear, you end up “releasing” a lot of that trapped potential.
Not only does facing up to your fears head-on help you to expand your “comfort zone” and behave more proactively in the world, but it also helps you to dissolve some of your self-limiting beliefs. It helps develop a broader sense of just what you might be capable of when you put your mind to it.
Overcome Your Fear of the Dentist
If you’ve got a fear of the dentist strong enough to motivate you to cancel and dodge your regular appointments, you can be sure that you will feel far “freer,” and less fragile when you force yourself to go ahead with the appointment after all and come to realize (or remember) that you have what it takes to deal with it.