Overcoming dental phobia is the collective responsibility of the patient, the patient’s family, and the dentist.
Dental phobia is mainly to blame for the alarming rise in the number of people with poor dental health. It has been found that up to 40 million Americans refuse to visit the dentist for fear of pain, and are experiencing dental problems in various forms and severity. The causes of dental fear can range from a traumatic experience to a co-occurring psychological disorder like anxiety or depression.
To respond to this all-too-real problem, dentists have become aware that their practice must continue to evolve, and that new methods and equipment need to be adopted to convince the fearing populace, especially children, that dentistry today isn’t like the dentistry of old. In her DentistryIQ article, Dr. Leslie Townsend writes that dentists must teach parents to be good dental role models to their children.
So how do we raise fearless – or at least less fearful – little patients? Inform new parents about the importance of starting dental care early. Encourage them to try hard not to share their dental fears with their children.
Dentists can also put patients at ease by showing off state-of-the-art equipment designed to minimize pain and the chances of a procedure failure. Offering amenities such as headphones and snacks are also great ways to distract patients from their fears.
What could prove most effective, however, are solutions addressing the roots of dental fear that a highly skilled dentist in Orlando, FL and elsewhere employ. One of these is the Oraqix® anesthetic delivery system.
No Needles Here
Manufactured by DENTSPLY International, based in York, PA, Oraqix® is a non-injectable gel comprised of 2.5 percent lidocaine and 2.5 percent prilocaine. These anesthetic drugs kick in 30 seconds after application and last for 20 minutes. However, what makes Oraqix® a blessing for trypanophobes (or those with a fear of needles) is how the drugs are administered.
The dispenser for Oraqix® is a handheld device with a blunt-tipped end. With careful handling, the dispenser can fill a periodontal pocket with the anesthetic gel, confining the anesthetic effect within the area for treatment. A maximum of five 1.7-mL gel cartridges can be administered to a patient within a treatment session.
Oraqix®, to date, remains as the only needle-free anesthetic delivery system approved by the FDA. In fact, DENTSPLY strictly points out that the drug in not to be injected.
Innovations like Oraqix® make dental treatments less fearsome for patients, giving a caring Orlando dentist better opportunities to provide the appropriate and necessary dental attention that every patient needs.
(Source: How to help your patients overcome dental phobia, DentistryIQ, July 28, 2014)