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How to Overcome Dental Anxiety

According to the American Association of Endodontists, approximately 15 percent of Americans do not go to the dentist because of fear or misconceptions. People with dental anxiety experience high levels of stress and nervousness during (or when thinking about) dental visits. If you have spent years (even decades) avoiding the dentist out of fear or anxiety, Kois Dentistry would like to offer some advice. In this blog post, we share a few coping strategies and tips on how to overcome dental anxiety.


Meditation exercises like yoga before your dental treatment and deep breathing techniques prior or during your treatment can help ease nerves and relax your body. Practice deep breathing by inhaling through your nose for a slow count of three and then exhaling out for another slow count of three. Being mindful of your breathing can help you feel more in control as your mouth is being worked on.

Distract Yourself

Many dental practices offer in-office amenities that help distract patients during treatment. Amenities vary from office to office but can include music and headphones, television, pillows, blankets and aromatherapy. Before choosing a dentist, inquire about the types of amenities offered to help anxious and nervous patients relax. If the practice does not provide music and headphones, you can also ask the staff if you can bring your own to listen to music or an audiobook during your treatment.

Ask About Sedation Dentistry

There are several types of sedation dentistry options available to put patients in a comfortable and relaxed state during treatment. At Kois Dentistry, we specialize in oral sedation, which is administered through a tablet that the patient takes an hour or so prior to the dental procedure. Oral sedation puts patients in a conscious yet relaxed and dream-like state. A light anesthetic is usually provided with oral sedation to minimize pain. Kois Dentistry also offers IV sedation, another treatment option that puts patients into a conscious, drowsy state during treatment. Patients feel little to no pain during treatment and will not remember anything after treatment. Sedation dentistry techniques are safe and can be used during almost any dental treatment.

To learn more about sedation dentistry, please schedule an appointment at one of our Seattle locations today.