Exceptional Dentist Office Now Offering Calming Techniques to Relieve Patients’ Dental Phobias

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With increasing numbers avoiding the dentist office, many doctors are offering more sedation options in order to bring people into the office.

Many people fear their bi-annual visit to the dentist office and as a result, go untreated for much too long. The very idea of a visit to the dentist office can be quite daunting, and some patients would much rather risk their oral health than see a dentist. Some people are afraid of the needles and/or the noises associated with the dentist more than they are the actual dentist, but it is these fears that are leading to possible health consequences. Through the sedation dentistry techniques that are now an option at Exceptional Dentistry, these fears and anxiety can be alleviated with one small pill or with nitrous oxide.

Those who let their phobia get the best of them are often compromising their health down the line. Avoiding the dentist can bring some pretty dire consequences like gum disease, gingivitis, or tooth loss. Realizing this steady trend, dental offices are trying to relieve patients’ fears in order to get them into the office. Dr. Ted Murray is among the 6% of dentists in the United States routinely using IV conscious sedation. Patients under conscious sedation are able to respond to commands and breathe on their own. Dr. Murray & Dr. Berning also use nitrous oxide to help anxious patients "take the edge off" and feel comfortable enough to successfully complete a routine visit.

Doctors Ted Murray, Kristen Berning and the team at Exceptional Dentistry in Dubuque, Iowa take exceptional care of their patients. While it’s true that sedation is a great tool to help relieve many of the fears people may have in visiting the dentist, it certainly takes more than that. The doctors and their team must be compassionate and knowledgeable as well as able to relate to the patient—understanding why they are so hesitant in this twice-a-year-visit to dental office. And some creature comforts can help make patients generally relaxed, which makes the entire dental visit more enjoyable.

“I make sure that my patients are completely comfortable when visiting my office. One way I do this is to make sure all their questions are answered regarding their visit, what we will do, what they can expect. My team also makes sure that they have everything they need in order to be relaxed and comfortable as well,” Dr. Murray says. He adds that even with all this, some patients still present anxiety. “So we educate them about the different sedation procedures available. After this, the patients are usually much more relaxed. Knowing that whatever procedure they’re about to undergo, they won’t feel a thing—that’ll put a smile on anyone’s face.”

Making your patients comfortable doesn’t start right before they undergo a procedure, it happens when they first visit the office for a consultation. Doctors Murray and Berning spend between 30 minutes to an hour for the initial consultation. They give their patient a thorough evaluation of his or her dental health, an oral cancer screen, at-home hygiene education and much more.

And don’t worry, if it’s been a few years or a few decades before last seeing a dentist, there’s nothing to be ashamed of. Dr. Murray assures, “People come in with an array of dental problems. This happens because they’ve avoided the dentist for far too long. But that isn’t the important thing. The important thing is that they’re here now, and we’re here to help.”

Exceptional Dentistry features two outstanding dentists: Dr. Ted Murray and Dr. Kristen Berning. Dr. Murray has more than 30 years of dental experience and advanced training through the Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies (LVI), and is one of only two Iowa dentists to receive accreditation through the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry. Dr. Kristen Berning is currently attending the University of Minnesota Postgraduate Program in Esthetic Dentistry. She is certified in Laser Dentistry. She is one of the youngest female dentists in Iowa to receive her Fellowship in the Academy of General Dentistry.


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Jessica Espinoza
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