Tips for Navigating Dental Anxiety

Here at 1111 Dental we understand the dentist is not everyone’s favorite place to be. Many people have general dental anxiety, but other times there is a deep-rooted fear. This usually stems from one or several bad experiences that occurred in a patient’s past.

We absolutely understand how these experiences can cause mistrust in dental professionals. We are always here to help anyone who is ready to cope with their anxiety. If you suffer from dental anxiety, or “hate going to the dentist” we do not take it personally! Our patient’s comfort is our number one priority.


Clear Communication

The best thing you can do to help us accommodate your needs is to speak honestly. When you call for an appointment, give our front office staff a heads-up about any previous dental traumas.

If it would help you, before committing to an appointment, we can always give you a tour of the office, let you meet our staff and give us a chance to understand your concerns before your sitting in the chair. Once you are comfortable (as you can be)with our office, if during any appointment you are uncomfortable always let us know.

We have no way of knowing what you’re thinking or feeling unless you tell us! Knowing what you’re experiencing and how you’re feeling, helps us do our job better and treat your individual needs.

If there was a particularly bad experience or a certain aspect of dentistry you are nervous about, let the hygienist and dentist know. Dental technology moves rapidly and there may be ways to avoid your previous experience altogether.

Navigating Dental Anxiety - Eleven Eleven Dental

Comforts and Sedation

We offer blankets, and neck pillows to make your visit more comfortable. We also offer low-level sedation to help ease tension. Most people are familiar with “laughing gas” or nitrous oxide.

This is the lowest form of sedation available, and really helps you to relax. The perk of nitrous is that it is out of your system by the time you leave the office. That means that you can drive yourself to and from your appointment, making scheduling easier.

In most cases, nitrous helps you to feel more relaxed, and care less about the procedure. We always start with a low level to determine your tolerance and can always adjust the nitrous oxide as needed. If you are interested in nitrous for your appointments, please let us know.

Dr-Richard-Carlile-speaking-with-an-assistant at Eleven Eleven Dental

Stay Distracted

Many people find distraction a useful tool. We encourage you to bring any items that can divert your attention, as long as they won’t disrupt treatment. Whether you want to get lost in an audiobook or podcast or want to listen to relaxing music, we encourage you to bring any form of listening material that will help you.

Another thing to remember is to try and focus on your breathing. You will often hear us tell you to focus on breathing through your nose. This is easier said than done, but if you find yourself getting nervous in the chair bringing your focus to your breath can ease tension and redirect your attention.

Focusing on your breathing also ensures you aren’t holding your breath. Many people, without even realizing it hold their breath during injections, which actually makes the experience more difficult.

At the end of the day, we understand that most of the patients who walk through our door are not excited to be here. We also understand your previous traumas play a role in your experiences going forward.

It is our job to help you overcome these previous struggles and we provide multiple options to make your appointments easier to endure.

We simply ask that you be direct and honest with us so that we are able to best serve your individual needs. If you are not yet a patient of ours and would like to talk with us about your fears and how we can help you, please give us a call!

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At Eleven Eleven Dental, we believe your comfort should always come first. You will feel our warmth and compassion as soon as you walk through our doors.

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