Dental anxiety is very common and so are the effects. Most people experience some degree of this condition. However, people with a more serious case can experience many negative complications as a result of their dental anxiety. Poor dental health, a need for more serious interventions, and an increasing anxiety about dental procedures all contribute to a poor quality of life for people with fear of dentists. And when you add in the effect of the anxiety itself on quality of life, it’s clear that people will experience significant benefits when they can overcome the effects of it and make regular visits for preventive and restorative care.
If you are tired of living in the shadow of dental anxiety, please call (407) 834-6446 today for an appointment with Orlando sedation dentist Dr. Michael L. Weinstock at his office in Altamonte Springs.
Avoiding or Delaying Dental Care
One of the most common consequences of dental anxiety is avoiding dental care. Many people with dental fear just don’t see the dentist. Even for routine preventive care, they are too scared to make it to the office.
Preventive dentistry is important not just for oral health, but for overall health. People who aren’t getting regular dental care are more likely to have gum disease, and therefore more likely to suffer some of the gum-disease-related health problems. This may increase their risk for diabetes, heart disease, stroke, pneumonia, and even cancer.
Need for More Invasive Procedures
Avoiding preventive care and minor restorative dental procedures means that people with dental anxiety are more likely to need more invasive dental procedures. More invasive dental procedures are more expensive. This increases the cost of dental care for people with dental anxiety. More invasive procedures are also riskier–they’re less likely to succeed. This increases the risk of tooth loss.
But perhaps the worst thing about the need for more invasive procedures is that they can increase dental anxiety.
Increasing Dental Anxiety
If a person with dental anxiety only makes it in for care when they need a serious procedure, they’re more likely to experience an increase in fearing dentists. Their experience with dentistry is built on highly invasive, very expensive, and risky procedures. They’re more likely to experience discomfort after any appointment, even minor cleanings. The result is that they are reinforced in their opinion that dentistry is something to be feared.
Psychological Burden of Anxiety
People with dental anxiety experience a heavy psychological burden related to their anxiety. Whenever a dental appointment is due, they can begin to experience anxiety over a month before their appointment. And even if they don’t have a procedure or appointment soon, any twitch or twinge in their teeth can make them anxious about their potential need for an appointment. They may try to self-medicate to conquer anxiety, which can lead to long-term addiction or acute overdose. They may experience mood disorders and conflicts related to their dental anxiety.
People can also experience psychological effects from their poor oral health. People with unhealthy mouths can be self-conscious about their appearance. They can develop depression about their poor health and their prospects of ever having a healthy smile again.
Overcome Your Dental Anxiety
The consequences of dental anxiety are serious, but not inevitable. Even people with it can get needed dental care. They can overcome their dental anxiety with sedation dentistry. Sedation dentistry makes it easier to make dental appointments without the psychological burden of anxiety.
If you are tired of living in the shadow of your dental anxiety, we can help. Please call (407) 834-6446 today for an appointment with sedation dentist Dr. Michael L. Weinstock in Altamonte Springs in the Orlando area.