Updated: Dec 10, 2018
Understanding How to Overcome Your Fears About Dental Procedures.
If you fear going to the dentist, you are not alone. According to a study done by WebMD, between 9% and 20% of Americans avoid going to the dentist because of anxiety or fear. Here at Dr. Eichhorn's office we strive to create a comfortable and relaxing atmosphere for our patients. However, we also understand that some patients, due to a deep rooted fear, never feel at ease in a dental office. Our goal is to be able to help everyone that comes into our office overcome their fear and anxiety. Below we have noted a few steps you can take to calm your dental anxiety.
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Overcoming Your Fears
Many of our patients can point to a specific instance in their life that caused them to develop dental anxiety. For some, it was a negative experience at another dental office. The first step we like to take to help our patients feel comfortable is making an appointment to meet the doctor. The key to coping with dental anxiety is to discuss your fears. Once Dr. Eichhorn is aware of what your fears are, he will be better able to work with you to determine the best ways to make you less anxious and more comfortable.
Nitrous Oxide Gas
Nitrous oxide, or commonly referred to as “laughing gas,” is a safe and effective sedative agent that is mixed with oxygen and inhaled through a small mask that fits over your nose to help you relax. This is as option we offer to our patients to help them feel more comfortable during certain procedures. It is not intended to put you to sleep. You will be able to hear and respond to any requests or directions. Once placing the mask on your nose, we will ask you to breathe normally, and within a few short minutes you should start to feel the effects of the nitrous oxide. Some say they feel light-headed or a tingling in their arms and legs. Others say their arms and legs feel heavy. Ultimately, you should feel calm and comfortable. The effects of nitrous oxide wear off within minutes after the mask is removed. While nitrous oxide gas is not for everyone, it is an option you can discuss with Dr. Eichhorn.
"Conscious sedation" is a type of sedation in which a patient can still respond to directions, but will not feel any pain and will not be able to recall the procedure the following day. The conscious sedation we offer is administered using medication and nitrous oxide gas. You will be prescribed this medication following an evaluation to take prior to your appointment. At the beginning of your appointment, you should already be feeling the effects of the medication. During this appointment, we will attempt to complete all dental treatment that you may require to prevent a need for return visits. For more information about this topic, please refer to our Sedation Dentist page on our website.