I'm Nervous About Going to the Dentist: Can You Help?

I'm Nervous About Going to the Dentist: Can You Help?

Feeling nervous about going to the dentist is nothing to be ashamed of. It’s common. In fact, dental anxiety affects an estimated 9-20% of Americans.

While everyone experiences dental fears differently, there are ways to get the care you need with less emotional stress. And our expert team at Swinney Dental in Tyler, Texas, is here to help.

If you’re feeling nervous about going to the dentist, the following information may help ease your mind.

Reasons behind dental anxiety

A range of factors involved with dental care may prompt uneasy feelings. Some common fears include:

You might also feel nervous due to past negative dental experiences or out of embarrassment about your less-than-ideal oral hygiene habits. 

You may hold a greater risk for dental fears, including the most severe form known as dental phobia, if you have an anxiety disorder or depression. 

How nitrous oxide sedation lessens dental anxiety

At Swinney Dental, we offer nitrous oxide sedation, also called laughing gas, to keep you comfortable during dental work. You simply breathe in a special gas mixed with oxygen through a mask.

Soon after the sedation starts, you’ll feel calm, a bit light-headed, and relaxed. You might even fall asleep. Regardless, you won’t likely recall the details of your procedure afterward. 

Nitrous oxide sedation is gentle, safe, and pain-numbing. Additional benefits include the following:

You’ll feel normal soon after the mask is removed. Most people go back to their usual daily activities post-treatment. 

Other ways to manage your nervousness

You can take other steps to manage dental anxiety. Talking with our team about your concerns before your care can go a long way toward relieving nervousness. If you let us know about fears concerning pain, for example, we can let you know whether pain is a risk and, if so, discuss ways to prevent or minimize it. 

Other helpful practices include:

You may benefit from cognitive behavioral therapy or anxiety medication for severe symptoms.

If you’re unsure about dental sedation to ease your nervousness, you can opt for a five-minute trial to see how it feels.


To learn more about managing dental anxiety, call Swinney Dental today. You can also schedule an appointment using our website's convenient online booking feature.

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