Estimated read time: Less than a minute
This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.
DENTISTS these days offer the fearful help beyond laughing gas and Novocain. Some even provide massages and virtual-reality goggles.
Here are some other ways to relax in the hot seat:
* Bring your Walkman. (We're still waiting on the noiseless drill.)
* Practice deep, slow breathing. It helps by relaxing muscles - which help relax you.
* Consider Valium. Many dentists will give you one, if you've had it before and someone can take you home.
* Find a dentist with whom you have a rapport. "I find the less I talk about dentistry, the quicker it goes," says Dr. Michael Margolin, who talks to his patients about movies, restaurants and vacations - "the same conversation we'd have if we were just hanging out."
"If you can talk to a dentist about your fears, about what you like and don't like," adds New York's Dr. Louis Siegelman, "that's worth milligrams of medication."
- Barbara Hoffman