The Fourth of July is just a few days away. Many families celebrate by setting off some small fireworks or by attending a large community fireworks display.
Many people find the fireworks exciting and fun, but not everyone does. Some people are bothered by them, and some people find fireworks more scary than fun. For them, the Fourth of July can be a time of anxiety instead.
We mention this because we are familiar with anxiety at our dentist office in Alma, MI. We won’t pretend that general dentistry is as exciting a fireworks show, but we have seen how dental anxiety can make dental care extremely difficult for some patients and their families.
We don’t have a magic wand that can make dental anxiety disappear, but our team at Mid-Michigan Dental Excellence has been helping anxious patients get the care they need for years, and we will do everything we can to help you or your loved one as well.
Be Patient With Yourself
If you struggle with dental anxiety or dental fear, it’s OK. You are not alone. Experts have estimated as many as 1 in 5 people feel anxious about dental care.
We also know that having a friendly staff (like ours) may not be enough to help you feel at ease in a dentist’s chair. If you’ve been dealing with dental anxiety for years, it’s not going to disappear in a single visit to our office. We understand this, but it’s also important that you understand this as well.
However, it’s also true that dental care can get easier. With each visit, you will get to know us a little better. This will help make each trip a little less stressful. With time and patience, you can make professional dental care a regular part of your oral health routine.
How Sedation Dentistry Can Help
Dental sedation is a great option for many patients who feel anxious or fearful about dental care. We offer two sedation options at Mid-Michigan Dental Excellence, either of which may be right for you or someone you love.
Dental anxiety can occur for a number of reasons, such as:
◼ Worry about pain
◼ Worry about gagging
◼ Worry about a piece of equipment (e.g. the drill)
◼ Worry about a particular procedure (e.g. a root canal)
◼ Worry about a previous experience at a dentist office
◼ Worry that the dentist will criticize your teeth
We never want you to feel uncomfortable at our dentist office in Alma, MI. We also never want anyone to feel bad for trying to improve their oral health. No matter what shape your teeth are in, our goal is to help and support you.
Sedation dentistry can help you relax so you can receive the care that your need, whether that’s a basic cleaning and exam or something more complex. Both of our sedation options can keep you pain-free, prevent you from gagging, and keep you calm throughout your treatment.
Before you make an appointment for a cleaning, however, please let us know about your anxiety. This will give us an opportunity to discuss ways we can help you feel more comfortable, including whether dental sedation is right for you.
Our Sedation Options
As we mentioned earlier, we offer two kinds of sedation at our practice. While both can be effective, you may prefer one over the other. We would be happy to answer your questions about either or both to help you decide which may be right for you.
In the meantime, here’s some basic information about each option.
▶ NITROUS OXIDE
You may know nitrous oxide by its other name — laughing gas. This type of sedation is inhaled. When you breathe it in, it creates a relaxed and euphoric state of mind. This helps you feel calm, but it also blocks pain during your treatment.
One of the benefits of nitrous oxide is that it takes effect quickly, and it wears off quickly when the gas it turned off at the end of your procedure.
▶ ORAL SEDATION
This is a stronger form of sedation dentistry. You take a dose of medication about an hour before your appointment. By the time you are ready to be seated, you will be so relaxed that you may feel like you are falling asleep.
As with nitrous oxide, oral sedation will keep you relaxed and pain-free. The big difference is that the effects of oral sedation can last for hours, so you will need to have someone else drive you to and from your appointment.
If you would like to learn more about we help anxious patients, start by calling Mid-Michigan Dental Excellence at (989) 796-4848 or by contacting us online.