Odonotophobia: fear of anything having to do with the mouth or teeth being examined or worked on, commonly referred to as dental fear.
Meet Linda. Linda is a 55 year old woman who works as a nurse in a local hospital emergency room. Every day Linda goes to work, she sees more than her fair share of trauma; things like compound fractures, gashing wounds, blood and needles, just to name a few. This would be enough to make almost anyone queasy, but not Linda. She also went through several years of medical schooling and hands-on residency to get to where she is now, so naturally, you might assume that a dental visit would be no big deal for her.
The high-pitched whir of dental tools, being confined to a chair while someone takes x-rays or scrapes away at your teeth, water sprays, suctioning, the bright light above your head glaring down on you; these are all things that might trigger a little apprehension for the average patient. For people like Linda, however, it’s not just a little anxiety. These things can invoke a fight-or-flight response and intense anxiety, strong enough for someone to avoid even a simple routine dental cleaning.
Like many others, Linda experiences what is called odonotophobia, or a fear of anything having to do with the mouth or teeth being examined or worked on. Phobias, by definition, have no apparent root cause behind them. Most people have one or more irrational fear of some type, so it’s not particularly strange to us when someone like Linda walks through our doors and can’t pinpoint why they are afraid to see a dentist. Simply put, they just are.
Taking into account Linda’s expert background with IV’s, and the fact that she had a very high tolerance to pain medication, she was pleasantly surprised that Dr. Kidess was able to read her non-verbal cues to adjust the sedation medication combination and levels and find the perfect “sweet spot” where Linda was able to relax comfortably during her visits. She later commented that Dr. Kidess was “an artist” because of how well she was able to use her technique for the benefit of her patients.
If you have avoided the dentist in the past for any reason, your future just became brighter. Contact our caring staff today for a consultation or an appointment to see what Dr. Kidess can do for you!