Chapter: How Food Relieves Anxiety
Start by eating foods high in protein and avoiding caffeine. Foods high in protein produce a calming effect, unlike sugary foods. Also, some dentists prescribe and administer medication to help patients relax, the most common being a mixture of laughing gas and oxygen. Sedation is safe when administered by dentists who are trained in its use, so patients should discuss the methods and risks. The best defense against anxiety is knowledge; patients should discuss their treatment options, request informational materials and voice their concerns.
"Anxiety can actually contribute to additional dental problems," says AGD spokesperson Charles Perle, DMD, FAGD. "Phobias, panic attacks and anxiety can all lead to canker sores, dry mouth, burning mouth syndrome as well as other problems. Patients should visit the dentist regularly to ensure that dental problems are caught early."
Reviewed: January 2012