If you’re like most people during the pandemic, you probably went past the 6 months mark after your last dental cleaning. Although a portion of people were able to resume their regular cleaning and exam schedule in the past few months, this isn’t the case for everyone. Some people haven’t been to the dentist since before the pandemic, and some people simply haven’t been to the dentist in years. Regardless of when you stopped visiting the dentist regularly, we’re here to offer some tips to help you stop avoiding the dentist and get back into a regular oral health routine.

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Acknowledge Your Dental Anxiety

If you avoid the dentist because you suffer from dental anxiety due to bad experiences in the past, or other reasons, our team is happy to help you do whatever it takes to feel comfortable.  

Your first step to stop avoiding future visits to the dentist is by first acknowledging your dental anxiety. Are you feeling anxious because of COVID-19? Or are you feeling anxious because visiting the dentist has always felt like an anxious experience for you?

If COVID-19 makes you feel anxious to visit the dentist, know that our Woburn dental office takes the highest level of precautions to eliminate your risk of contracting it. Infection control has always been a top priority for our dental practice. You can read all about the precautions we take here. Please do not hesitate to contact our dental office to learn more or to have any questions you have about safety precautions answered.

Book Your Appointment For First Thing in the Morning

One way to make your appointment easier and to ensure you commit to it is by booking it for first thing in the morning. If the appointment happens first thing in the morning, you won’t have time to sit around all day feeling anxious thinking of an excuse to cancel it. Instead, you can get it over with and move on with your day directly afterward. This can help reduce the overall amount of anxiety you experience.

Communicate Your Anxiety

One of the best ways to overcome dental anxiety and start seeing our Woburn dentist regularly for appointments is by communicating your anxiety. Dr. Clancy and his Team are compassionate and very understanding when it comes to patients with dental anxiety. By talking about your fears with them, they can help you overcome them and feel comfortable during every appointment. We’re always happy to explain dental procedures at every step, take breaks throughout procedures and do anything else that might help you feel more comfortable. If Dr. Clancy isn’t aware of your anxiety, he won’t know to take extra steps to make you feel more comfortable. Don’t feel embarrassed. Please let us know if you feel anxious or have concerns. We want you to have a comfortable and successful dental experience.

Practice Relaxation Techniques

Another way to help you stop avoiding the dentist when you haven’t been in a long time is to practice relaxation techniques. This can include breathing exercises and meditation. Practicing relaxation techniques before you come to the office for your dental appointment can help you feel more relaxed and comfortable. You can also use these relaxation techniques while you’re in the chair.

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Get Comfortable and Use a Distraction

If sitting through your dental appointments feels like a huge chore, we want to help you feel more comfortable by offering distractions. We can provide you with noise-canceling headphones and let you choose something on TV to watch. Patients can also enjoy private operatories for privacy and diffusers to eliminate that classic dental office smell you’re used to. Additionally, we schedule patients for long appointments so we can take our time and provide you with undivided attention.

Ignore our team working in your mouth while you sit back and relax while listening to your favorite music or watching your favorite TV show or movie. These distractions can help you feel more comfortable and help pass the time. Not to mention, they will help distract you from your dental anxiety.

Bring an Accountability Buddy

If you struggle to keep dental appointments after you make them, consider finding an accountability buddy. Just like going to the gym with a friend will make you more likely to stay on track, so can an accountability buddy for the dentist. Schedule appointments around the same time for your whole family or with a friend. That way, you have to visit the office no matter what.

Focus on the Benefits Of Good Oral Health

Dental anxiety can make it hard to even schedule an appointment, to begin with. Instead of focusing on the anxiety you experience at the dentist, think about all the oral health benefits of visiting the dentist. Visiting the dentist regularly will help prevent gum disease, cavities, and tooth loss down the line. If you want to avoid pain, tooth loss, bad breath, and an unsightly smile, visiting the dentist regularly is necessary. Oral health can also affect your overall health. When you have bad oral health it can increase your risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes and even affect your immune system. These are all important factors to focus on instead of your dental anxiety.

Ask For NuCalm

If nothing works to help you feel less anxious, please talk to us about NuCalm. NuCalm is a drug-free relaxation system. Patients can expect to feel like they’re in a meditative state and will drift into a deep relaxation during their appointment. Following their procedure, they will feel like they just had the best nap of their life.

Schedule an Appointment With Our Dentist in Woburn and Winchester Today

If you’re ready to get your oral health back on track, Dr. Clancy at Divine Smiles is here to help. Please call (781) 396-8558 to schedule an appointment. Make sure to mention at the start of your appointment if you suffer from dental anxiety. This will help us prepare to create the most relaxing and comfortable experience possible.