Dental phobia is a real condition. It is defined by having an extreme fear of going to the dentist. Most people experience some level of anxiety when faced with an impending dental appointment but a dental phobia is a whole different animal. It can be so inhibiting that some people will avoid seeing a dentist until the issue becomes acute. Unfortunately, this results in having to undergo an even more invasive procedure, the prospect of which can only contribute to the feeling of dread.

What can cause such extreme emotion over a simple dental checkup? It can be quite understandable if the patient has experienced a real life nightmarish incident in the dentist’s chair. Even hearing someone’s else’s story can bring on a panic attack for someone who is so extremely sensitive.

The unknown can be scary. Someone who has has gone without dental care for most of their life will naturally be apprehensive, sometimes to the point when all logic goes out the window and is replaced by total fear.

Irrational is a word that is often used to describe a phobia. This means that there is no apparent reason for the reaction, meaning that there is no acceptable explanation for it. Whatever the reasoning or lack thereof, dentists are trained to deal with patients who exhibit dental phobia.

A “pre-treatment appointment” is a good way to break the ice with a phobic patient. As the term suggests there will be no actual dental procedure during the consultation, it is more of a chance for the patient and the dentist to gain a rapport. It also allows the patient to get used to the atmosphere in the office, see the dental instruments that can seem so frightening, and meet the hygienist and dental assistants that will be treating him. The hope is that this first encounter will make the next one easier for everyone concerned and that it will be the beginning of a long term patient/dentist relationship.

Find a wonderful dental home with Spokane Valley Dentistry. Dr. Conway and his staff look forward to welcoming you. Call today @ 509-926-6261.