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Fear of pain – Fear of pain is a very common reason for avoiding the dentist. This fear usually stems from an early dental experience that was unpleasant or painful or from dental “pain and horror” stories told by others. Thanks to the many advances in dentistry made over the years, most of today’s dental procedures are considerably less painful or even pain free.
Fear of injections or fear the injection won’t work – Many people are terrified of needles, especially when inserted into their mouth. Beyond this fear, others fear that the anesthesia hasn’t yet taken effect or wasn’t a large enough dose to knock out any pain before the dental procedure begins.
Fear of anesthetic side effects – Some people fear the potential side effects of anesthesia such as dizziness, feeling faint, or nausea. Others don’t like the numbness or “fat lip” associated with local anesthetics.
Feelings of helplessness and loss of control – It’s common for people to feel these emotions considering the situation – sitting in a dental chair with your mouth wide open, unable to see what’s going on.
Embarrassment and loss of personal space – Many people feel uncomfortable about the physical closeness of the dentist or hygienist to their face. Others may feel self-conscious about the appearance of their teeth or possible mouth odors.