Needle phobia is extremely common in dentistry and all of our team members are experienced in dealing with the challenges it may cause for you. We understand everyone's challenges are different and we aim to give every individual we help the best possible treatment outcome.
If the thought of having a dental injection or needle in the back of your hand is unbearable, we offer alternative sedation methods such as oral premedication, oral sedation and inhalation sedation to help you get through your treatment.
During your pre-assessment visit for sedation, we discuss any fears or phobias that you may have and consider other possibilities to ensure that your anxieties are put to ease and that the right treatment plan is tailored to you.
If you have opted to have IV sedation we can offer you a numbing cream that you apply at home 45 minutes before your appointment over the area of skin where the cannula is inserted before intravenous sedation. If this sounds manageable to you, please ask us for this at your assessment and we will provide it to you with instructions.
We understand that cannulation can be uncomfortable, particularly if you are anxious about needles. For simple sedation, we use very small paediatric cannulas so this part is less noticeable.
We will discuss your anxieties at your assessment visit and can provide you with premedication and/or numbing cream to apply to your hand/arm before your appointment if necessary so the cannulation procedure is pain-free.
For advanced techniques, we use a larger cannula. If you feel that you require some numbing cream please ask us and we will provide this for you.
Our team of Sedationists and Anaesthetists will aim to ensure you are comfortable and relaxed throughout your procedure.
This involves having a sedative drink at the surgery. The sedative will start to work in 20 minutes making you feel relaxed and sleepy so that you do not feel nervous about any injections in your hand or in your mouth. Oral sedatives do not put you to sleep but help with anxiety and promote relaxation.
Once you are relaxed, we can give you more sedatives through a vein in your arm or hand. This will produce deeper sedation. We do not recommend oral sedation routinely but it is very useful for individuals who cannot tolerate any injections whilst awake or those who commonly experience fainting at the thought of a needle.
This involves breathing a mixture of oxygen and nitrous oxide through a special nosepiece. It gives you a pleasant, relaxed feeling. The dental team will talk to you at the same time in a calm and reassuring way. Most people feel warm, floaty and tingly.
At the end of the procedure, you will be given pure oxygen for a couple of minutes and you will recover very quickly. There are no after-effects and most people can drive or return to work the same day.
This technique is good for mildly to moderately anxious people who are able to breathe through their nose. Inhalation can be used to aid cannulation.
We can provide hypnotherapy and CBT to help you combat your fears with our clinical hypnotherapist Dr Munir Ravalia. Combining therapy with other means of sedation will help to provide a long-term solution to overcome your fears and plan for better oral health.
Dr Shilpa Shah has treated needle-phobic patients successfully for many years. At Victoria dental clinic we use 'The Wand®' (computer-aided anaesthesia) for all our needle-phobic patients. We also use a gel on your gum which numbs the area.
The Wand® provides pain-free alternative to the traditional dental injection.
Patient Experience from The Wand®