I have problems in the dental chair. I don’t know what it is but every time the dentist or hygienist comes at me with something sharp looking, I can’t help but wiggle and sometimes even have trouble breathing. I thought my dentist was understanding. We’d had a couple of appointments where he waited for me to calm down. However, at my third appointment, he said, “You’re an adult and should be able to handle this by now.” I was so embarrassed. I know I’m an adult. I know I should be able to handle this by now. But, I don’t know any solutions. Have you had patients who’ve struggled as I do?
I am going to tell you right off the bat that your current dentist is not going to be the best dentist for you. To be frank, he was rude and insensitive to your very real anxiety in the dental chair. Adult or not, many patients are uncomfortable in the dental chair, some so much that they can’t even go and end up only going in for dental emergencies.
I don’t know where you live, but what I would like you to look for someone who considers themself a sedation dentist. Not only will they be compassionate, instead of rude and judgmental, but they also have the tools to give you an anxiety-free/pain-free dental appointment.
What Type of Sedation is Best?
My recommendation is to start with the lowest level of sedation that is useful to you. The lowest level is nitrous oxide, which people used to call laughing gas for the floaty, happy feeling it can give you. This will relax you in the dental chair. A benefit to nitrous is that you can get right back on with your day once your appointment is completed.
For invasive procedures, I recommend oral conscious sedation. This is administered by pill. However, it is so strong that you will need someone to drive you to and from your dental appointment as well as stay with you for a few hours after your procedure until you are lucid and steady on your feet. Most people find they completely sleep through their procedure, leading some to dub it sleep dentistry.
Look for a dentist who offers these options and I think you will find your life changed.
This blog is brought to you by Lafayette, LA Dentist Drs. Foreman and Thimessch.