Unit 103 - 5680 152nd Street, Surrey, BC

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About Dental Anxiety & Fear of Dentistry

People can be anxious or fearful of going to the dentist for a variety of reasons, including worrying about the effectiveness of anaesthetic or feeling like your dentist is rushed or not paying attention to your concerns. At Southridge Dental in Surrey, we work to reduce your anxiety before you even step foot in our dentistry office.

What Causes Dental Anxiety, or Fear of Dentists?

There are several reasons why people may be fearful or anxious about going to the dentist. The most common causes of dental anxiety include:


Fear of dental pain is most common among adults 24 years of age and older, likely due to early dental experiences before many of the advances in "pain-free" dentistry. Dental pain or discomfort during previous dental procedures will likely cause patients to be more anxious.


People may feel ashamed or embarrassed to have a stranger looking inside their mouth, particularly if they're self-conscious about how their teeth look. Dental treatments also require physical closeness, which can make some dentistry clients anxious and uncomfortable.


People often develop fears about particular situations in which they feel they have no control such as flying in an airplane. It's not uncommon for people to feel helplessness and a loss of control when in the dental chair, which may lead to triggering dental anxieties.

Symptoms Associated With Dental Anxiety/Fear of Dentistry

While there aren't any clear boundaries which separate "healthy" anxiety from the phobia, we all have fears and cope with them in our own different ways. However, going to see the dentist does not have to fill you with terror. If it does, then you may need some help overcoming your fears.

Some of the symptoms of a dental phobia include:

  • Feeling tense or having trouble sleeping the night before a dental appointment
  • Getting increasingly nervous while you're in the waiting room
  • Beginning to feel physically ill before or during a dental exam or procedure
  • Having panic attacks or trouble breathing when dental instruments are near or in your mouth
  • Experiencing uncontrollable gag reflexes while getting dental work done.

Should you believe this describes you, you need to tell our dental team about your feelings, concerns and fears. We will do the best we can to help you work through your dental anxieties.

How Does Surrey's Southridge Dental Help Relieve Your Fears of Dentistry

Southridge Dental has taken a number of measures to overcome any fears of dentistry you may have before you even step foot into our Surrey dental clinic. Our dental staff are especially trained in patient care services, will inform you of what to expect and address any concerns you may have, ensuring your confidence and comfort during your dental visit.

Once you arrive for your dental appointment, you'll be:

  • Greeted by a warm, modern waiting room boasting an extensive library of magazines, newspapers and dental health information
  • Welcomed and attended to by our friendly, caring and experienced team of dental care staff
  • Pleased with the clean, spacious and entertaining children's play area - complete with video games!
  • Pleasantly distracted from dental work thanks to music and video libraries available in all operatories.

Good understanding of the dental procedures to be undertaken can do wonders to put your fears to rest. Always feel free to ask any questions you may have, and be sure to tell us if something has you worried.

What is Sedation Dentistry and is it an Option at Surrey's Southridge Dental?

Sedation dentistry refers to the use of sedatives given by a pill, elixir, intravenous, inhaled or otherwise to calm and relax a dentistry patient prior to and during a dental appointment. Surrey's Southridge Dental will provide dental care while you are asleep or awake. Either way, your comfort is our primary concern. Your visit is entirely designed around providing you with the best in dentistry services while relieving your stress and anxiety at the same time.

The use of sedation and anaesthesia in dentistry has an excellent record of safety. Dr. San Bhatha is committed to your overall health as his primary concern. Communication is also essential - it is vital that dental patients advise us of all medications being taken and of any changes in health since their last visit.

At Southridge Dental in Surrey, if needed we can offer an Oral Sedative called Triazolam for Adults and Chloryl Hydrate mixed with juice for kids as well as including the option to have Nitrous Oxide(Laughing Gas) as well.

How Can You Relieve Dental Anxiety?

Dental anxiety can prevent improvement in one's overall health and can compound dental problems. Getting past this fear allows patients to improve their appearance, eat better and improve their overall sense of well-being. Here are some useful tips to help ease your anxiety:

  • Schedule a dental appointment for a time when you're less likely to be rushed, such as in the evening, early in the morning or on the weekend
  • Distract yourself by making use of a portable player and headset to listen to your favorite music or watch a new DVD
  • Close your eyes and use your imagination to picture yourself somewhere relaxing, like the beach
  • Avoiding caffeine will lessen anxiety - eating high-protein foods will help produce a calming effect
  • Focus on slowing down your breathing - many find it very relaxing to pace one's breathing
  • Communicate with our dental staff and share your fears - we'll do our best to help alleviate any concerns you may have.

Discover how we can help you overcome your dentistry fears - contact our Surrey dental clinic today.