Managing Dental Fear

​Everybody is afraid of something. While we don’t always share the same fears as everybody else, we are able to empathize with the same feeling of helplessness and terror. Clowns, heights, spiders, and even coming to the dentist are very common fears. It often seems that humans tend to throw rationality out the window, since clowns are usually quite pleasant, and it is unlikely for a spider to cause harm in Calgary. If you’re like most of us though, rationality doesn’t really have much sway in the end. We are simply afraid and no fact is going to sway us. For me, spiders are truly terrifying.

While I am no expert on each and every one of your individual fears, it is my sneaking suspicion that the root of dental fear seems to have formed a long time ago, back when we didn’t have adequate anesthetics (freezing) or advanced tools.

While dentistry has long been associated with fear, it does not need to continue to be so. In this age, technology exists to make your experience as painless as possible. I am not saying that there will be no pain or discomfort, but I will say that dentistry has come a very long way since then. Nowadays, there are different levels of sedation to help aid the procedure. At our clinic, we provide oral sedation such as Ativan or Nitrous Oxide. Combine this with the assurance that we do everything in our power to make your visit relaxed, there is truly no need to fear our clinic.

Like I mentioned before though, fear is not something that can be banished at the hand of a rational thought. Despite this most inconvenient aspect of human nature, there are things that you can do to ease your nervous anticipation.

Before each procedure, make sure that you are informed of what is actually happening in your mouth. After all, most of us fear that which we do not know. Once you are fully knowledgeable about your situation, be at ease with the certainty that the procedure can be stopped at any time. At Braeside Dental, every patient is given a clicker bug. If, for any reason, a patient needs to stop, they simply just give a click and we address the problem. We can even give your mouth a break half-way through the procedure if you would like.

It might be helpful to try relaxation techniques on your own as well. Yoga or Progressive Muscle Relaxation can elevate your mind and spirit (it also can be quite calming). In addition, feel free to bring your own music to listen to in the dentist’s chair. We also have televisions on the ceiling and in the front, along with many movies to choose from. We even have video games to play with in the waiting area.

Most importantly, let us know your fears right away. That way, we can work with you in an environment of complete understanding and support you in any way that we can. Most often, nervous patients that come to Braeside Dental form great relationships with our team. In the end, they are confident in our ability, are comfortable with our clinic, and have managed their fear. Many even look forward to coming!

Please never hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

Thanks for reading!

Braeside Dental Centre


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