Having The Smile You Want Begins When Fear Is Addressed

added on: September 9, 2015

Smiling makes you feel good! Even when you don’t feel like smiling, research has shown that smiling anyway has a positive effect on your state of mind.

One of the reasons I love being a dentist is helping people to feel good about their smiles. But the best moments are those shared with a patient who has been transformed by smile enhancements.

It’s not unusual to hear new patients describe how self-conscious they are about the appearance of their smile. Many tell me about shielding their smile with their hand when with others. Or, some have taught themselves how to smile without their teeth showing. They’ve conditioned themselves to literally tuck their lips under the edges of front teeth to hold their lips in place.

What is truly sad about many of these situations is the root cause of smile deterioration or avoiding improvements – dental fear. Fear associated with dental visits is the number one reason that keeps adults from much needed or desired dentistry.

It is a rare situation where dental fear exists that doesn’t stem from a traumatic dental visit in the past. Some adults even remember a terrible experience as a child like it happened yesterday. Just telling us about it can make them tear up or break out into a sweat.

While these memories can hover for a lifetime, they don’t have to dominate your smile’s health and appearance. Although we can reassure you that you can trust us, we know that this only occurs through paced care that’s appropriate for your comfort level. We begin with a private consultation in a ‘living room-style setting’ where we sit in comfortable armchairs and just chat. For some people, they prefer to begin with a telephone consultation, which we are happy to arrange. Both are offered at no cost to you.

From there, it is up to you as to how you’d like to begin. We can have one of our friendly team members give you a tour of the office. Or, you may wish to speak with some of our patients who once had similar fears and learn how they overcame their fear. Regardless of which direction we go, you’ll always be aware of the next step and what is involved. This way, you can determine how much or how little you wish to accomplish during each step.

It’s hard to describe the elation we see and hear from patients when a smile has been brought to a healthy, attractive state. Their faces light up and their smile seems to come from the inside out! Their entire personalities take on a happier glow and they have more confidence and self-esteem.

Many fearful patients begin dental care under oral or I.V. sedation. Both are totally relaxing and typically erase all memory of treatment afterwards. I.V. sedation (‘twilight sleep’) is a deeper level of relaxation but does require a longer recovery.

We tend to ‘measure’ our success of helping patients overcome fear when they tell us they no longer need sedation of any kind. We see them walk in the door smiling and leave with a smile as well. This gives us enormous pride, but more importantly, creates a smile that reflects beautifully on each individual… a smile that makes each person feel good from the inside out!

2015 is winding down. Don’t let the year end without taking a positive step to the smile you desire. Dental fear should be the last thing that holds you back from life with a terrific smile. Begin by calling toll free 1-866-9-Smiles. I’m sure you’ll feel comfortable from the very beginning.

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Dr. Ban R. Barbat

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