Laughing in the Face of Dental Fear May Ease Worries


For those who hate going to the dentist, thinking positively, joking with dental staff relieved stress, studies say.


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If you’re afraid of going to the dentist, optimism and humor might help ease your worries, new research suggests.

About 50 percent of adults suffer some degree of dental fear and about 5 percent have severe dental fear. Even so, most people with dental fear go to the dentist regularly.


Swedish researchers have found that important factors in managing stress during a dental visit include optimism on the part of the patient and an atmosphere of humor in a patient’s interaction with the dental staff.


In one study, the University of Gothenburg team asked people with dental fear to complete a questionnaire and identified five main methods used by the patients to fight dental fear:


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