In part 1 of this blog post, I discussed finding a dentist. The general advise is to ask your friends first – they may know someone who will be a great fit for you.
Secondly, have a look on the internet, if you want to come and see me, thats great just drop me an email, and lets get things started! (firstname.lastname@example.org)
I believe that your relationship with your dentist is critical for you to have faith in your dentist, and therefore not fear going to visit him or her.
You should shortlist a few dentists who you like the look of, and go to see them for a free consultation. Even if the free consultation is with the practice manager or the treatment coordinator, it is still vital to go and see the clinic. You can pick up a lot about the feel of the clinic, and the one which has a good vibe, and makes you feel comfortable.
Your paid consultation
A lot of people fear that their teeth have got so bad, and now its going to cost many thousands to fix the damage, and this can leave you feeling hopeless.
Whenever I help someone who is on a limited budget, the first items on the treatment plan are:
1 – Get out of pain
2 – Stop active disease
These are the two least expensive treatments.
I cannot emphasise the importance of investing a little to actually find out what the situation is, and look at all the options to get things on track. Once the active disease is slowed or stopped, you then have a little time to think – or save up for the part of the treatment which will reverse the years of damage.
I normally require a deposit for paid consultations and treatment sessions. This helps us from a business point of view, as missed appointments are very expensive but from your point of view, its very important as if you are anxious, then it can be very easy to think ‘I just won’t go’ as you have nothing to lose, and short term benefits of not having treatment can be far more appealing than the future goal of having perfect dental health.
What is your actual fear?
Usually there is one thing that you are more afraid of. This can be fear of pain, fear of needles and I have even seen people who are terrified of the feeling of being numb!
Many people will say that its the whole experience, this is an easy one to fix! 99% of people are put at ease by just taking the time to listen to your biggest concerns, and explaining the cause of all the problems, and showing all the possible solutions. When everything is clearly laid out on the table, everything suddenly feels less daunting.
What it all boils down to…
Overcoming your fear of the dentist will ultimately boil down to you, and your will power. It is the same as very overweight people who try to lose weight, ultimately there are lots of people who can help them get to their goal, but many fail because they make excuses. If you are serious about improving your dental health, then you need to make the right steps towards someone who can help you – without doing this, you can make all the excuses to yourself, but your oral health will not improve.
I know this last paragraph may seem harsh, but I am sure that if you really want something, then you can have it, you will quite often need to organise your time, and be committed to it.