dental phobia or dental anxiety (fear of dentists)

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Do you fear going to the dentist?

do you fear dentists?
Do you try to avoid visiting a dentist at all costs?
Do you only go to the dentist when your dental problems become so complicated to be ignored?

If your answers were yes then don’t worry, after reading this article you will find that the next visit to the dentist became much more easier.

Dental anxiety or dental phobia

Fear of dentists is so normal. The majority of people don’t like to see someone drilling into their teeth but when this fear becomes so intense in such a way that it prevents you from seeing a dentist even if your teeth started to decay then you are suffering from dental phobia.

what causes dental phobia

The following are two major possible causes for dental phobia

  • Traumatic experience: just like any normal phobia forms, dental phobia may be the result of a traumatic childhood experience with dentists. The problem is that many of the normal visits to dentists are considered a traumatic experience in the mind of the child. Maybe if you haven’t visited a dentist when you were child you would have not developed that fear when you became an adult.
  • Subconscious beliefs: Your beliefs might be another cause for your dental fears. The subconscious mind gets programmed by suggestions. The more you receive a certain suggestion the more its likely to become a belief. How many times have you been told that going to the dentist is a painful experience? Actually people never speak of dentists except when they mention pain. Over the years those suggestions accumulated in your mind and made you believe that going to the dentist is the most Fearful Experience ever.
  • Imagination: your imagination is another very strong cause for fear of dentists. When Your mind visualizes pictures of tools penetrating your teeth in a way that may be far from reality your fears of dentists will certainly grow. Your mind exaggerates reality and if you want to prevent that from happening then close your eyes while visiting the dentist and you will find that your fears became much less. actually when you see the tools you start to become more and more afraid because of the unrealistic images you visualize in your mind.
  • the smell!!: Just notice how you feel while waiting for your turn at the dentist's clinic and then notice how will your fears increase as soon as the door is opened and the smell gets out. simply this smell is anchored in your mind with bad experience and that's why you unconsciously recall the bad experience and become afraid whenever you smell it.

How to deal with dental fear

Here is how to deal with dental fears, the following are actions that could make your next visit to the dentist much less painful:

  • stop visualizing the dental tools in your mind, the more you visualize those tools in a fearful form the more your fear will increase. You can close your eyes whil being there this will help you not to form those unrealistic images in your mind. NLP can help you much in changing the mental image your have in your mind for those tools and so make your fear less intense
  • the next time you go to the dentist forget about all of your previous beliefs and rate the pain in fair way.I am sure that you will find that the pain was much less than what you have imagined.

did that help?

yes, but tell me what is NLP

yes, but i have got other fears, tell me how to deal with them

yes but i have got other phobias,other than this one

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