Fear keeps millions of people from obtaining the dental treatment they need and the gorgeous smiles they deserve. Without proper care, your oral health will deteriorate. Even if you don’t notice any problems, issues like gum disease and cavities can develop with relatively mild symptoms. Understanding dental anxiety and how to deal with it can help you protect your oral health and attractive smile.
Dental fear usually falls into three categories:
- Distress about the unknown, dental anxiety is fairly common. Many people feel nervous about procedures they have never experienced.
- Anxiety over a known danger is classified as dental fear. Previous pain or negative experiences often lead patients to experience dental fear.
- With dental phobia, people may feel ill just thinking about visiting the dentist. Dental phobia is the most intense level of dental fear and often causes patients to avoid the dentist unless an emergency arises.
To deal with dental anxiety, experts offer several tips, such as:
- Open the lines of communication with your dentist. Explain your concerns and ask questions so that you feel comfortable with treatment plans. Share your fears so that the dentist and team will know how you feel and can offer additional reassurances.
- Bring a comfort item. Children who feel nervous may bring a stuffed animal or favorite toy. Adults may find that wearing favorite pajamas or other comfy clothes will help them calm down.
- Try relaxation exercise. Deep breathing or yoga before your visit may decrease your stress and help you get through the appointment.
- Ask about sedation options such as laughing gas, oral conscious sedation, or IV sedation, which can allow you to enter a totally peaceful state during the procedure.
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Just because you may not be blessed with perfectly white, straight, flawless teeth doesn’t mean you must live with that smile your entire life. Dental veneers can change your smile by hiding imperfections and giving you a natural-looking beautiful appearance.
Veneers are thin shells that are adhered directly to the front surfaces of your teeth. They are commonly available in two different types of materials. Porcelain veneers are created by lab technicians after your dentist provides a mold of your mouth. Once the porcelain veneers are made, they are sent to your dentist and you return to the office to have them bonded onto your teeth. Some preparation work is necessary to your teeth before getting the veneers, often requiring the removal of a bit of your tooth enamel.
The other type of veneers are made from composite resin material. They are created by your dentist in the office, so there is no waiting time for them to be made in a separate lab. Composite veneers are thinner than porcelain, and therefore sometimes break more easily. Also, porcelains are often recommended by dentists due to their natural-looking appearance and their ability to resist stains.
Some of the reasons that patients obtain dental veneers include the following issues:
- Stained or discolored teeth
- Chipped or broken teeth
- Misaligned teeth
- Worn teeth
There are some instances that veneers aren’t the best solution for improving your smile. Patients who grind their teeth have an increased risk of damaging veneers, as well as those with habits like chewing on hard items such as ice or pencils. It is important for patients to realize that they must properly care for their veneers so that they will continue enhancing your smile for many years to come.
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According to the Canadian Diabetes Association, an estimated 9 million Canadians have diabetes or prediabetes. A chronic medical condition, diabetes occurs when the body doesn’t process sugar correctly. With Type 1 Diabetes, you produce no insulin at all. Type 2 diabetics don’t manufacture enough insulin or the insulin does not work properly. If you have diabetes, it impacts your whole body, including your mouth. Understanding common issues and taking a proactive approach will help you protect your oral health.
Does diabetes increase my risk for gum diseases?
Because diabetes weakens your germ-fighting abilities, you are more likely to have a higher concentration of the bacteria that cause gum disease in your mouth. High blood glucose levels can result in more severe levels of gum disease.
What other dental issues do diabetics face?
Although gum disease is the biggest oral health concern you may struggle with, diabetics should also watch out for increased chances of oral infections, thrush, dry mouth, and poor healing.
Should I tell my dentist about my diabetes?
Having diabetes changes your oral health needs. If your provider isn’t aware of the issue, he or she won’t be able to offer you the most thorough level of care. Make sure to update your dentist about any changes in your health during your regular visit.
How can I prevent problems in my mouth?
The biggest step you can take is controlling blood sugar and managing your diabetes. As well, you need to develop good home habits that include frequent brushing and flossing. Scheduling routine checkups will also help keep your teeth and gums healthy.
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You can take your kids to a general dentist, but you may want to consider a specialized dentist who is trained in techniques just for children. Many kids are more comfortable and willing to see a dentist who is targeted to them. So what makes a pediatric dentist different than a regular one?
This type of medical professional has completed additional training and education for treating dental problems in children. They are qualified in general dentistry, but also in procedures unique to kids, anesthesia for younger ages, and basic orthodontics. Pediatric dentists also receive training about children’s psychology and how to handle behaviors specific to this age group. Just like general dentists, look for pediatric specialists who are accredited by the American Dental Association (ADA).
Another benefit of pediatric dentists is that they are usually trained to handle children with disabilities or special physical conditions. In learning to provide dental care to kids, they are informed on the best ways to help children overcome fears associated with dental visits. Often, pediatric dental offices are decorated to make children feel at ease and many have technology to entertain kids like televisions, music, and games.
Your child’s pediatric dentist will spend time teaching proper dental hygiene techniques, so that good home care can be maintained. Kids will learn about brushing, flossing, proper eating tips, diet guidelines, and other important aspects of good oral health. All of these things, along with regular dental checkups, will go a long way in keeping your child’s mouth healthy.
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