Nov. 30, 2001
Volume XXXIV, No. 47

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Dental phobia clinic helps patients relax

Are you afraid of going to a dentist? Eighty percent of American adults are, but now there's help. The Dental School has begun registration for a dental fears clinic.

The clinic will help patients manage their anxiety with relaxation techniques, which seem to be more effective than anti-anxiety medication.

"Medication tends to help patients during that particular dental visit. Once the medication wears off, patients still are afraid of going back to the dentist. Behavior management techniques, however, help patients gain control of their dental fears so they can maintain long-term dental care," says Dr. Shahnaz Mehdiabadi, assistant professor of operative dentistry and a dental associate in private practice.

The clinic is geared toward patients who suffer from dental phobia, including those who are not presently under professional dental care. For $25, participants will learn how to help themselves be less apprehensive through this drug-free program.

Participants must schedule a dental appointment with a dentist of their choice before registering for the clinic. Patients who need help locating a dentist can contact the Dental School.

To register or for more information, call ext. 7-3295 or 7-3515. Registration will continue until mid-December. The clinic begins Jan. 16. The cost is $25.


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