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Have No Fear! the dentist doesn’t have to be scary

outdated fears, misperceptions can get in the way of dental health

Dr. Eric Carlson

DAVE BUCHWALD/CREATIVE COMMONS
DAVE BUCHWALD / CREATIVE COMMONS

Many people have dental fears. Those fears can be rational or irrational, but what really matters is overcoming those fears and making choices that benefit your health and the health of your children. Fears about the dentist often originate from the days when dental methods and techniques were crude to say the least. Since those ancient times, the practice of dentistry has made significant advancements. In the 21st century, some of the fearful notions that people have about dentistry have been significantly reduced, if not eliminated. Confronting those fears when it comes to your teeth will help you maintain a healthy mouth and establish a valuable relationship with your dentist.

Patients who have not had an appointment with the dentist in years can be embarrassed at what the doctor might find. Remember, dentists are trained professionals. They have examined thousands of mouths. The examination is not about judging, it’s about providing patients with solutions to better oral hygiene. Examinations and consultations are a great first step to a healthy, beautiful mouth. The dental examination is an art; we use observation and technology to create an accurate picture of your oral condition.

The fear of pain is real. Patients are fearful of the discomfort that is associated with the procedures and the instruments that can be used. But when it comes to dental care, this is no longer the dark ages. The techniques and instruments have evolved in leaps and bounds. We take great pride in providing gentle care in the most trying circumstances. With advancements in the field of dentistry and improvements in the equipment used, pain management becomes increasingly more effective. The brutal techniques of the past have been replaced with kinder, gentler, minimally invasive approaches. Even in the most extreme cases, apprehension can be easily quelled with sedation therapy.

There is an assumption that once you step into a dentist’s office, anything that has to be done will cost a great deal of money. The truth is that procrastination contributes more to the expense of dental care than addressing and potentially nipping your problems in the bud. In the long run, preventive maintenance will provide patients with cost savings. Ignoring the problem creates larger problems that need more expensive solutions. Preventive dental care will give you a return that is a far better alternative. When you let your problem get out of hand, solutions can be costly and potentially painful. I’m sure that you’ve heard that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. When you spend even $200 in prevention, your potential savings can easily equal $3,000. No gambler would turn away from odds like that. The complications from an unhealthy mouth may cost you more than money. To be honest, there are instances when patients may not be able to afford certain procedures, but second-guessing does not provide solutions or options.

Leave your apprehensions behind; don’t be afraid, we can help! Schedule an appointment to talk to your dentist and create a plan that works. Be proactive about dental care that you – and, just as importantly, your family – won’t regret.