Dr. Nammy Patel from San Francisco Dentistry discusses holistic ways to calm dental fears, including a comfort menu consisting of gum numbing gels, aromatherapy, and more.
What are some holistic ways to calm dental fears?
I can understand. It’s super normal to feel a little afraid coming to the dentist. I have to say, “I get a little nervous too.” Sometimes, I’m a little nervous.
You get nervous?
A little bit. We have something called a comfort menu in our practice. What the comfort menu does, it has a lot of things on there. For example, if you wanted to numb your gums, we have a special gel. We have aromatherapy. We have these warm neck wraps that we can put on your neck, and that makes you feel super relaxed. The most important thing that I do, actually, is sit down with our patients and really, knee-to-knee, eye-to-eye, just making sure we’re connecting and really understanding that those fears are real, and I totally get it. And also, it’s okay for them to feel safe.
And that experience of connecting with one another, making sure that they can trust, and know that somebody is going to make them comfortable and look after them is really important. That’s what makes dentistry a lot easier. And then, also, if somebody has gone through a lot of trauma, like a papoose board or something along those lines, we do things that are called iatrosedation, and also sedation. And also, I use a lot of techniques from NLP, neuro-linguistics programming, to make sure that we can go to the actual originating incident, figure out what occurred, and how we can take our child-self that was trapped in that time, to grow them up, and help them feel safe and comfortable.