Conquering Your Fear of the Dentist

conquering your fear of the dentist - College Hill Dental Group

Conquering Your Fear of the Dentist

How long do you wait until you call the dentist when you’re feeling discomfort? Quite often, we find that some of our patients only call their dentist in Easton, PA, when their pain is unbearable. So, why do people put off going to the dentist? Great question. As a dentist who’s been serving the Easton, PA community since 1944, we’ve heard and seen it all. Most patients who avoid the dentist are doing so out of fear. Their fear of the dentist can stem from a few different things, whether it be from past dental experiences, myths, etc.

We understand that going to the dentist isn’t everyone’s favorite thing to do. However, the longer people put off going to the dentist, the more time and money they will spend. Not to mention the amount of pain or discomfort, their dental problems can cause. 

No need to worry, Dr. David Moghadam, your favorite emergency dentist in Easton, PA, shares some tips for conquering your fear of the dentist. 

Identify the Cause of Your Fear

We understand that not all fear is based on the same experiences and worries. To find the best solution for you to overcome your fear of the dentist, you will need to understand what is triggering this anxiety and fear.

  • Are you worried about pain?
  • Are you concerned about needles?
  • Have you had a bad experience at the dentist?
  • Is it the fear of the unknown?
  • Does the sound of the drill overwhelm you?

We offer a number of solutions to help get you through each concern that you may have. This includes encouraging you to listen to favorite music or a podcast while you’re in the chair, to help you to relax.

Communication Is So Important

Rest assured, we take all of our patients’ concerns very seriously. A good dentist and compassionate team of professionals will encourage you to share your fears and concerns. The more that we know about you and your concerns, the better we can help you. 

We see patients who have a fear of the dentist regularly. Communicate your fears and your needs. This allows us to best support you. We want you to have a positive experience when you are in our hands.

Schedule a Visit to Our Dental Office in Easton, PA

Anxiety can stem from not knowing what will happen. With this in mind, we suggest that you schedule a visit to our office before you come in for treatment. If you do have the ability to come and pay a visit to the office. Our team can help to schedule a good time for you to stop by and meet everyone. Becoming familiar with friendly faces can make the idea of placing your trust in their hands much more manageable.

This visit will also serve as a great opportunity for you to share your fears with the team members. The more that we know, the more support we can offer you.

Schedule Your Appointments Early In The Day

There’s something about getting something over and done with first thing in the morning. Dr. O’Grady, an emergency dentist in Denver, CO, says that if you schedule your appointment first thing, you’ll be able to get your appointment done without needing to spend the day dreading it.

You’ll feel less frazzled and stressed, which will allow you to better focus on working through your fears when you’re in the chair.

Make Your Needs Clear

While our dental professionals are skilled at understanding the assortment of noises our patients make when working on their teeth, sometimes clear communication is the better way. Before treatment, make your needs clear. Establish a clear signal for stop, so your dentist can stop if you need to take a break.

Ask for music, blankets, and other comforts if you need them. At College Hill Dental Group, we want you to have the best experience possible.

Know Your Sedation Dentistry Options

Sedation dentistry is incredibly helpful for all dental patients. Certainly, it’s a must when considering procedures like dental implants in Easton, PA. But did you know that there are several methods of sedation dentistry to consider? 

Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, is one of the most commonly used options. This gas can help you to better relax while you’re getting work done. Other options could include anti-anxiety medications to be taken prior to your appointment.

Overcome Your Fear of the Dentist with College Hill Dental Group

The best way to learn what will work for you is to call and discuss your options. Whether it has been a few months or a few years since you last saw a dentist, please don’t let it keep you from getting the oral healthcare that you need. We offer a judgment-free office and the compassion needed to help you conquer your fears. Our patients are always our number one priority. 

Celebrating Dental Hygiene Month

dental hygiene month - College Hill Dental Group

Celebrating Dental Hygiene Month

The whole month of October, we’re celebrating Dental Hygiene Month! Below are some of the ways you can celebrate your smile at home. 

Tips for a Happy & Healthy Smile

Brush Twice a Day for Two Minutes

Brushing your teeth is an essential part of any oral hygiene regimen. You’d be surprised how much plaque can build up on your teeth just after one day. Brushing twice a day for at least two minutes helps reduce the likelihood of cavities, gum disease, and other dental problems. If you can, try to brush after each meal. Many Easton, PA dentists recommend using ADA approved toothpaste as well as a soft bristle toothbrush. 

Dr. Moghadam recommends switching out your toothbrush every 3 to 4 months or as soon as the bristles start to get break down.

Floss

Flossing is just as important as brushing your teeth. It ensures that the small crevices in your mouth are thoroughly cleaned. Those who do not floss daily are more likely to get cavities and develop gum disease

Here’s how you should floss:

  1. Use about 18 inches of dental floss and wrap it around two fingers, leaving about 1-2 inches of floss.
  2. Holding the floss with your thumb and index finger, you will insert the floss between two teeth.
  3. Gently move the floss up and down, rubbing it against both sides of each tooth (avoid hitting your gums).
  4. Once you’ve reached your gum line, curve the floss, and move it back and forth between one of the teeth.
  5. Move the floss to the next set of teeth, repeat the steps above.

Rinse

Incorporating mouthwash into your oral hygiene routine can make a world of difference. Luckily, there’s a mouthwash for everyone! Whether you’re fighting bad breath, plaque cavities, or wanting whiter teeth. Dr. Moghadam recommends finding an ADA approved mouthwash for the best results. 

Chew

Studies have shown that chewing sugar-free gum helps put a stop to tooth decay. Gum naturally helps produce more saliva, which fights off cavities. Harmful bacteria and food particles will be washed away. Dr. Cody Boals, a dentist in Colorado Springs, points out that those suffering from dry mouth would benefit greatly from chewing sugar-free gum.

Why National Dental Hygiene Month is Important

  • Encourages Good Oral Health – Good oral health takes a little bit of time each day, but it’s all worth it in the end. Without a proper oral hygiene regimen, you are at risk of developing serious dental problems. Our teeth are meant to last a lifetime, but you have to give them love and care. There’s an old saying, “You don’t have to brush your teeth, just the ones you want to keep.” 
  • Celebrates Hard Working Hygienists – College Hill Dental Group has been serving the Easton, PA community since 1944. We’ve had the honor of seeing generations of patients, and National Dental Hygiene Month is the perfect holiday to celebrate our hard-working hygienists. 
  • Keeps Us Accountable For Our Health – Studies have linked gum disease to other serious diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, respiratory disease, osteoporosis, and more. Taking the time to take care of our smiles will have a positive effect on our overall health.

Our College Hill Dental Group team encourages you and your loved ones to take steps in the right direction. If you need a family dentist in Easton, PA, turn to College Hill Dental Group. We offer a wide range of dental services, including cosmetic dentistry, restorative dentistry, and emergency dental care. 

How to Stop Teeth Grinding

how to stop teeth grinding - dentist in Easton

How to Stop Grinding Teeth

Teeth grinding or bruxism is a type of movement disorder characterized by the clenching, gnashing or grinding of the teeth. People with this condition either unconsciously clench their teeth during the day (awake bruxism) or grind them during their sleep (sleep bruxism). It is a fairly common condition, with an estimated 8% of adults grinding their teeth at night and more than a third of parents reporting symptoms of bruxism in their children. When done occasionally, clenching your jaw or grinding your teeth isn’t harmful. However, if you find yourself doing this regularly, it can result in severe dental damage.

Your teeth are made up of three layers, pulp, dentin, and enamel. The enamel covers and protects the dentin and the sensitive pulp, which houses nerves and blood vessels. Hard as the enamel is, it is still susceptible to damage. So, when teeth grinding goes untreated, it slowly wears down the enamel, exposing the sensitive dentin and pulp to bacteria. If you grind your teeth, search for a “dentist near me.” Our emergency dentists in Easton, PA, will treat the condition, so it doesn’t progress and lead to more serious dental issues.

How Do I Know if I Have Bruxism?

Sleep bruxism may be hard to notice until you develop severe complications, especially if you don’t visit your Easton, PA dentist often. On a side note, sleep bruxism is considered a sleep-related movement disorder, and people with this condition are more likely to develop other sleep disorders like sleep apnea. 

So catching the condition early enough may allow you to diagnose another sleep-related condition. 

Symptoms of Bruxism 

An estimated 80% of adults who suffer from bruxism may not even be aware they have the condition until it is too late, so watch for some of these symptoms.

  • Teeth grinding or clenching at night. It may be loud enough for someone close by to hear, like a spouse or a parent. 
  • Increased tooth pain or sensitivity.
  • Worn or cracked enamel.
  • Teeth that look fractured, flattened, chipped, or loose.
  • A locked jaw that won’t open or close completely.
  • A dull headache starting at the temples.
  • Soreness or pain in the jaw, neck, and face.
  • Disrupted sleep.
  • Damaged inner cheek due to chewing on it.

Admittedly, most of these symptoms will occur if you’ve been grinding your teeth for a while. Dr. Kristina Neda, a dentist in Georgetown, KY, agrees that tooth sensitivity may be the first sign you have sleep bruxism. So, contact an Easton, PA dentist, as soon as you notice it for treatment.

How Do You Treat Teeth Grinding?

Your dentist in Easton, PA, will most likely be checking your teeth for signs of grinding during your regular exams. Dr. Ben Kacos, a dentist in Shreveport, LA, agrees that if you experience any of the symptoms described above, inform your dentist. They will look for changes in your teeth and mouth over the next few visits and if they suspect you have sleep bruxism, they will:

  • Check for tenderness in your jaws
  • Look for any damage to your teeth, the underlying bone, and inside of your cheeks.

If you grind your teeth at night, your dentist may recommend that you wear a splint or a mouthguard when you sleep. Usually constructed from hard acrylics or soft materials, they separate your top and bottom teeth and prevent them from sustaining the damage caused by grinding or clenching. However, you should know that these oral appliances don’t stop you from grinding teeth; they prevent your teeth from being damaged. Addressing the root cause of your bruxism may help alleviate the condition. 

Causes of Bruxism

Stress and anxiety may be causing you to grind your teeth. Learning strategies to cope with stress and to promote relaxation, such a meditation, may prevent the problem. 

If your Easton, PA dentist determines that your bruxism is stress-related, they may refer you to a licensed therapist or counselor. They may also recommend short term use of antidepressants or anti-anxiety medication to help you deal with the stress.

  • Awake bruxism – usually caused by stress, anxiety, tension, or even concentration, you may be able to change the behavior by practicing proper jaw and mouth position.
  • Sleep bruxism – your dentist may prescribe a mouthguard and refer you to a sleep specialist to treat any sleep-related disorders. If issues such as sleep apnea are treated, it may improve your sleep bruxism.

If you have bruxism, the treatment Dr. David Moghadam recommends will depend on your specific circumstances. However, don’t wait for any of the symptoms described above to manifest before you seek help. Keeping up with your regular dentist appointments will allow your dentist to catch the condition early enough. If you do grind your teeth, our College Hill Dental Group team is here to help. Contact us today for a consultation.