How We Work With Nervous Patients

Many people are nervous when it comes to visiting the dentist – at Smile Pad we are used to helping nervous patients handle their experience. We believe that a combination of excellent treatment and an awareness of the potential obstacles for nervous patients make it much easier to overcome fear of the dentist for anyone. Years of experience have shown our dentists how to look after nervous patients and we have developed a range of solutions to help put patients at ease.

Awareness and understanding

Smile Pad dentists have plenty of experience of nervous patients and we understand that anxiety can arise from a number of different sources, including:

  • Anxiety related to not having control over what’s happening during the treatment
  • Anticipation of pain
  • Fear of injections, anaesthetic and/or needles
  • Feeling embarrassed about anxiety, especially in adult patients

These fears are very common and if you’re feeling them when it comes to visiting a Smile Pad dentist then you won’t be the first patient we’ve helped to overcome them. If the thought of going to the dentist makes you feel stressed, fearing the worst and you’re tempted just to walk right back out of the door then you’re certainly not alone.

Smile Pad dentists are used to handling anxious patients and we will always try to find the best way to help people through an appointment or treatment with minimum stress. That may be talking you through the treatment beforehand, or ensuring that you know you can stop for breaks at any time. We understand that every patient is different, and that anxiety is common, and so we make it a priority to ensure we know what will make life easier for you so that we can get the job done successfully.

Tips and techniques for minimising anxiety for nervous patients

Although every patient is an individual when it comes to how they react to dental treatment, there are some common tips and techniques that have worked for a large number of the nervous patients we have worked with.

  1. Opt for an early appointment. The earlier in the day the appointment is, the less time there is to get anxious about it. Book your appointment with our dentist in one of the first time slots of the day and you’ll avoid giving your anxiety time to build.
  2. Take your favourite music or podcasts. Distraction works well when it comes to anxiety and music or chat are a great way to achieve that. So, when you come for your appointment, bring your favourite music or most entertaining or interesting podcast to listen to on your headphones while the treatment is under way.
  3. Agree a stop sign with the dentist. It is always reassuring to know that you can stop the treatment at any time if the anxiety becomes overwhelming. So, agree a sign with the dentist that means you want them to stop, such as tapping their arm.
  4. Relaxation techniques. Sometimes, handling anxiety is as simple as learning to breathe more calmly or to be present, as opposed to overwhelmed by fear of what’s to come. Relaxation techniques can make a big difference to your experience of the appointment.
  5. Strong communication. Fear of the unknown is a big driver for dental anxiety so our dentist are happy to talk through the treatment step by step with you in advance. That way you’ll know exactly what to expect.
  6. Sedation options. There are sedation options available for dental treatment if you feel that these will help minimise the stress involved in your treatment – speak to your dentist to find out which options are available to you.

Smile Pad dentists have a wealth of experience with anxious patients and we will always try to accommodate your needs and ensure you know you’re in safe hands. If you have specific ideas about what could help make your treatment feel less stressful then let your dentist know.


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We are pleased to inform all patients seeking dental treatment that our practices are, and will remain open to cater to all your dental needs and maintain your oral health. We are available should you need advice, urgent care, or simply wish to attend for any other dental treatment. Our practices operate under the strictest government guidance and coronavirus protocols. Your safety and the safety of your family remains our priority. We look forward to welcoming you to our practice.
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