By Jessica J. Wilson
I woke up one morning with something not feeling right; something was misplaced in my mouth.I ran to the bathroom mirror to see what was going on, and I had broken one of my back molars in my sleep. I tried to put off fixing it as long as I could, but before long, the pain set in and it was no longer bearable.
Growing up, I had several bad experiences with dentists, so going in for a routine checkup or to have my tooth fixed was something I dreaded. At the time, I was unhappy with my dentist so I started searching for a new dentist who was not only caring but treated you like a friend, not just another dollar in their pocket.
After a great recommendation, I tried Dr. Brannen’s office. When I called and explained what happened and that I was in extreme pain, they got me into the office right away. The woman on the phone was very sweet and understanding of my situation.
As I drove over to the office, I had no idea what to expect. Would they look at my mouth and think I had bad teeth? Would they be rough? Would they even fix my teeth that day?
Once I met Dr. Brannen, all my worries disappeared. He as well as his staff did everything in their power to make me feel comfortable. Dr. Brannen listened to my past experience with previous dentists and let me explain exactly what happened to my mouth and where it hurt.
He gave me his recommendation of what treatment would be best and let me decide how I wanted to move forward. I had never been spoken to so kindly and honestly from a dentist. Right then more than anything, I respected him.
Dr. Brannen has been practicing dentistry since 1983. He has also been volunteering at the Good Samaritan Clinic for 20 years.
“I like the listen to the person’s experiences, their history with dentists,” he shared. “I believe the key to making patients feel comfortable is by listening.”
His office strives to make every patient a priority and to treat them like family. After any dental procedure, the practice will always follow up with a phone call to check on you as well as hear about your experience.
Dr. Brannen and his staff changed my perspective on going to the dentist. At 27 years old, I can say I no longer dread dentist appointments and I trust the care I am getting.
Dental fears are very common but can be overcome easily with the right techniques. The first step is recognizing where your fear stems from and why you have anxiety.
Here are a few of the most common dental fears:
- 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.
- Fear of injections: Many people are frightened by needles, especially when inserted into their mouth. Most dentists now rub on a numbing gel before the shot is injected.
- Fear of anesthetic side effects: Some people fear the potential effects of anesthesia. Others don’t like the numbness or “fat lip” associated with local anesthetics.
- Feelings of vulnerability: Sitting in a dental chair with your mouth wide open, unable to see what’s going on and what procedures are being performed.
- Embarrassment: Many feel self-conscious about the look of their teeth or possible mouth odors.
The key to managing dental anxiety is to discuss your fears with your dentist. Once your dentist knows what your fears are, he or she will be better able to work with you to determine the best ways to make you less nervous and more comfortable.
Try discussing your treatment options with your dentist. Ask your dentist to explain what’s happening at every stage of the procedure. This will help you mentally prepare for what’s next.
Also, establish a gesture such as raising your hand when you want the dentist to stop. Use this signal when you are uncomfortable, need to rinse your mouth or need to catch your breath.
Hopefully, with this information you will be on the road to managing your dental fears as well as overcoming them.
Brannen-Yarbrough Family Dental
1722 Memorial Dr, Clarksville
About Faces and Braces
2485 Fort Campbell Blvd., Clarksville
Tiny Town Dental
3402 Cainlo Dr #100, Clarksville
Armed Forces Dental
2207 Lowes Dr, Clarksville
115 East Mill St., Crofton
Peachers Mill Dental
1502 Tiny Town Road, Suite A, Clarksville
ABC Family Dental Center
1877 Fort Campbell Blvd., Clarksville
Pennyrile Family Dentistry
623 Millbrooke Dr., Hopkinsville
William Nunn, pediatric dentist
522 B Noel Ave., Hopkinsville
Dovard Porter, family dentistry
542 Noel Ave., Hopkinsville
Richard C. Allen, orthodontist
520 Noel Ave., Hopkinsville
McCurdy & Ellis
1275 Parkway Place, Clarksville
Karr and Blackman Orthodontics
1281 Parkway Place, Clarksville
Scarlet D. Rose, family dentistry
104 Commerce Street, Cadiz