Hypnotherapy Help for Dental Phobia

Dental phobia is the serious fear of seeking dental care. It is one of the most common phobias. Almost everybody is a little scared when it comes to see a dentist. But for some people this fear is so paralyzing, that they completely avoid any dental treatment.  An estimated 9-15% of all Australians suffer from anxiety and fear surrounding the dental experience to such extend that they avoid much needed care. They not only avoid the routine dental checkups, but the fear prevents them to see a help when the problems are worse, when they have cavities, suffer from infections and constant unbearable pain.

Why the dental phobia can be dangerous?

The dental care is very important not only for the general well being like good look, pretty smile and pleasant breath, but for the medical status. And again, it is not only the ability to properly chew and digest. The infected teeth and gums may cause serious medical problems. The resulting pain could be unbearable. The infection may spread to the jaws and to cause a serious illness, sometimes it can be even fatal.

Is it true that a severe phobia can be treated in one session?

What can be the cause of dental phobia?

  • Previously painful or negative experiences during visits to a dentist.

  • Learning fear of dentists from parents (called modelling)

  • Scary anecdotes of negative dental experiences learned from others or from movies, TV or newspapers

  • An embarrassment of your dental neglect and fear of ridicule

  • An anxiety caused by the dental process, like the machinery used, unpleasant mechanical sounds

  • Fear of lack of control while being trapped in the dental chair

  • Fear of any medical procedures, intensified by the use of masks, latex gloves and shields

  • Fear of the pain; this can be fortified by already painful teeth

  • Fear of injection

  • General fear of unknown

  • And more

How hypnosis and hypnotherapy can help with dental phobia?

There are many ways in which hypnotherapy will help:

 

  • Most often people who suffer from dental phobia know their fear is irrational and they can list a number of logical reasons why they should not be afraid. In this case the hypnotherapy will be very quick and effective and it will remove the fear of dentists.

  • During the hypnotic session the client will achieve the full body and mind relaxation, which by itself will minimize the level of anxiety and fear. The human body cannot be physically relaxed and mentally anxious at the same time. The brain won't process these feelings simultaneously. 

  • The client may be taught relaxation and self-hypnosis and this way will be able to relax when in the dentist chair

  • The client may be taught the pain control

  • The number of hypnotherapy techniques will resolve the deeper cause of the dental fear, if any

How do I treat the dental phobia?

I usually encourage the client to talk to the dentist first and have the procedure explained. Then during the first hypnotherapy session we talk about the client's fears and there is a short hypnosis session, and client is given relaxation exercises to practise at home.


Following hypnotherapy sessions will be aimed at the complete elimination of dental phobia and the general anxiety, depending on client wishes. It may take 1 to 5 sessions, depending on the cause of the phobia. The client may also be taught self hypnosis and pain control.


Alternatively, the second hypnotherapy session may be performed  during  the dentist procedure. I will be present during the procedure, the client will be in hypnosis, fully relaxed and enjoying the hypnotic state, while the dentist and the dental nurse will be doing their job.

 

When the phobia is strong anxiety may be overwhelming that visiting the dentist and enquiring about possible procedure is impossible. If this is the case, the goal of the first sessions is to remove this paralyzying fear and start with a chat with your dentist. One or two sessions for that are usually enough.

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