Dental anxiety most common in the North West, survey reveals

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A new survey has suggested that dental patients in the North West of England are most likely to suffer from dental anxiety. 

Research conducted by the Dental Law Partnership revealed that 94% of participants in the region have experienced signs and symptoms of anxiety when taking a trip to the dentist. This figure is significantly higher than East Anglia (79%), where patients are the calmest. 

Common symptoms of anxiety include increased heart rate, sweating, feeling nervous, having butterflies in your tummy and being restless. Anxiety symptoms can vary in severity, with people who have the most serious symptoms often choosing to postpone appointments. 

There are many reasons why people feel anxious about going to the dentist. Some have had negative experiences in the past, some are worried about pain, some have specific fears, for example, a phobia of needles and injections, and others are embarrassed about the state of their teeth. It’s perfectly normal to experience mild anxiety before a dental or medical appointment, but health professionals are keen to encourage patients to keep up to date with routine checks and to speak to their dentist about their fears in cases of severe anxiety. Modern-day dentists undertake training in managing patient anxiety and they are usually very friendly and approachable. 

If patients do struggle with anxiety or dental phobia, there are many techniques that can be used to try and make the process of having treatment less stressful and daunting. Examples include using painless injections and sedation.

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