Nigerian Dentists are human beings first before they chose Dentistry as a profession. Nigerian Dentists care about your whole body, your total health as a person. Nigerian Dentists are not just health professionals who inflicts pain on the teeth or remove pain in the teeth. They ensure that you enjoy healthy teeth and healthy body as long as you live. Many people have a fear of the dentist – some act on hear-says, some have wild imaginations about the nature of their jobs, and some have had nasty experiences in the hand of quacks in the past.
Death rate among patients attending dental clinics is very low as compared to many other branches of medicine. It is obvious that many people who fear dental procedures actually know that mortality rate is low yet they fear dental procedures because of pain
Dental pain is crazy, it can better be explained when experienced. Thus, most clinic attenders are either anxious or fearful.
This fear ranges from mild to moderate and severe ones among individuals. Patients believe that Nigerian Dentists often stress them out each time they visit them and thus they don’t get comfortable once they are in their dental offices. This article is to let you know that Nigerian Dentists are healthcare professionals who understand your worries and are responsible for the well-being of your oral health. They deal with this daily and have developed ways to lessen the stress and make you enjoy the visit. Here are top seven ways Nigerian dentists calm you while you’re in the chair at their clinic.
- The serene Environment
Most times one of the absolute things you would experience in every dental clinic you get to is the serene and cosy environment deliberately structured for the delivery of Dental Services with exterior and interior surfaces of the building neatly painted with a soothing or calm colour.
Nice & spacious reception as well as the rest of the facility in such a way that the size of the establishment conforms to the staffing and equipment requirements…dental clinics are welcoming.
Banking halls are used to this. Nigerians don’t mind televised programming too at their dental clinics. Nigerian Dentists’ belief is that fearful patient who walks into a dentist’s office also needs some amusement. This daytime television at our reception works as the perfect means of escape from a tense situation. This sometimes allay fears as some patients can forget about all their worries and fears as they watch television.
TV often makes the waiting time seem shorter, too. This is a big deal to us because no dentist would want a fearful patient to sit in the waiting room for an extended period. There had been cases of patients disappearing after a prolong wait.
The best dentists in town know this and thus plan the patients’ appointment calendar accordingly. To calm a nervous patient, the combination of a shorter wait and a quality talk show is often enough.
- Coloured Eye Glasses
One of the most dreaded parts of sitting in a dentist’s chair is the dentist’s viewing light. It is necessary for them to use this high-powered lamps to see the darkest portions at the back of your mouth. However, this bright light poses a different challenge. It magnifies the tension in an already anxious patients because patients have to stare straight into this light. Because we care, we ask our patients to wear coloured glasses or shades. This simple idea is usually embraced to block out the glaring light from the lamp.
The side benefit is that these glasses offer protection against clumsy hands and splashing fluids. Instruments or tools we often use to fix your teeth can sometimes fall from our hands. The eyeglasses do protect the eyes from any falling object from the dentist. Also, a dentist’s visit includes the occasional splashing of fluids. You’re spitting saliva/ blood, tools are rubbing against your teeth and may be passing across the eyes, and people occasionally cough or sneeze. The glasses make sure that none of these flying fluids get in your eyes.
- Calming Music
Calming music is one of the easiest ways to calm a patient. It is worthy of note to say healthcare professionals in the world appreciate the benefits of music therapy. They play soft music to calm people, thereby reducing the stress level and this has unexpected physical benefits.
Research suggests that music lowers blood pressure and reduces your heartbeat/ pulse. To a dentist, that’s the magic formula since patients often suffer from elevated blood pressure and increased heart rates upon entering the clinic environment. These are how irrational fears and anxiety impact the body generally.
Have you heard of one Dr Ebi Bamgboye- also known as ‘the singing dentist’. He sings to his patients to calm them down. The 56-year-old oral surgeon said he has crooned his way to calming patients ever since he can remember, as he sings along to tunes on the radio while carrying out his handiwork. He said: “People get very nervous in the chair, so I find singing helps soothes their nerves. Mostly it just makes them laugh and breaks the ice. “In some cases I have to use sedation drugs or gas and air, but for those who don’t need it I will sing to them. “In most cases it distracts them and gives them something else to think about, it distracts them from what they are nervous about. see the video here
- Open & pleasant Communication
Since your dentist knows you’re nervous or anxious, a good strategy is to acknowledge the awkwardness of the situation. Many Nigerian Dentists let their patients know that everyone in the office wants to help make the experience as comfortably enjoyable as possible. Use of strong medical jargon /or negative terms are avoided. They develop a kinship with the patient that makes the entire situation more acceptable.
Of course, why they might expect you to answer them while your mouth is full of tools is still a mystery to most of us. Perhaps we’ll write a blog about that at some point.
- Dental Health Education Sessions
Starting from the reception, dental health education has started. Some patients come in and start pricing treatment as if they are in the market. E.g. Good afternoon, how much is extraction? Do you guys do tooth whitening? How much is tooth replacement etc. Nigerian Dentists don’t like such approach. We have friendly front desk officer who will first calm you down and answer your questions as much as they could and advise you register for proper consultation with the doctor.
Nigerian Dentists take time to explain things to you in a very simple way using images, pictures, videos, charts, models etc. you would be able to relax a bit when you know what caused the dental condition you have, what is the treatment like, the benefit of prompt treatment and the risk involved in the consequence of delaying it further etc.
- Pain Control
Every good Nigerian Dentists would want to perform painless procedures on you, no matter what it takes. However, this statement seems very promising to an extent but not convincing in all cases. The realisation of this is hinged on many factors. Still, you shouldn’t have to suffer needlessly during a procedure. Dentists understand this and take steps to remove pain as much as possible.
When you’re losing your calm during a dental visit, Nigerian Dentists have several relief options that we often adopt. We have you in mind and your comfort is our satisfaction. Your dentist will probably suggest options such as a direct application of a mild anaesthetic agents in form of a cream, gel or spray or with a tiny injection (not the big one you must have seen before) into the soft part of the mouth, to numb the affected area so that you won’t feel any pain during treatments.
Another option is to make you partially sleep or unaware of pain with sedatives such as Nitrous oxide called laughing gas, which relaxes almost everyone. It can also be oral sedation where the patient takes a small dose of an oral sedative. In cases of extreme anxiety, or for extremely long and/or complex procedures, the dentist could also administer IV (through the vein) sedation. All these forms of pain and stress control are great methods to calm patients during a trying dentist’s visit.
Sure, visiting the dentist’s office can be stressful, but it’s nice to know how hard Nigerian Dentists work to lessen your stress by making sure you have a pleasant experience. These seven tips are just a few of the countless ways dentists make your visit as enjoyable as possible
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DENTISTS- what other ways have you used to calm your Nigerian patients?
PATIENTS-tell us your experience at the dental clinic