How Should You Communicate Your Discomfort to Your Dentist?
Posted on 7/25/2015 by Dr Wael Garine
The field of dentistry has had many advancements over the years to make the experience as comfortable as possible. However, the time might still come when you feel discomfort or even pain during your procedure. Your dentist will not always know this, so it is important to convey what you are experiencing.
However, this is sometimes easier said than done. How are you supposed to explain something when someone has his or her hands and dental tools in your mouth?
Use Your Hands The most common gesture that a dentist will ask his patient to use to communicate pain or discomfort is to raise their hand. This movement is almost instinctive and will be quite evident to your dentist or hygienist. Make sure that you are using the hand opposite your dentist and that you are raising it as a deliberate action. You might also want to make some type of vocalization to draw attention to the movement.
Don't Assume Your Dentist Can Read Your Facial Expressions
Some people cringe in pain or make other facial expressions expecting that their dentist will notice and change what they are doing. However, you should never rely on these expressions to accurately convey what you are experiencing. Your dentist might not understand that your actions are pain related. For example, if you squeeze your eyes shut with discomfort, your dentist might believe that you are trying to shield yourself from the bright overhead lights.
Have a Conversation with Your Dentist
If you feel that you and your dentist are not on the same page with your communication methods, feel free to have a conversation before your next procedure. Discuss which gestures they prefer you to use when you are feeling uncomfortable. This way, there should be no confusion over what you are expressing in the future and your procedure can go as smoothly as possible.
Please contact us if you have any questions about communicating your discomfort to your dentist.
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