Friday, 3 December 2010

Lavender Soothes Dental Patients Link To Article

There is definite good news for those suffering from dental anxiety: the scent of Lavender long known for its soothing properties has found a new use in dentistry. Recent research, published in Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, shows that lavender scent reduces anxiety in dental patients. However, the bad news is that it does not reduce anxiety about future dental visits.

Researchers from King's College London, studied the effects of lavender on 340 people, and found that those exposed to lavender oil scent were less anxious about their dental treatment. The study was carried out on patients waiting for a scheduled dental appointment.

The lead researcher, Metaxia Kritsidima explained that a substantial number of people avoided getting dental treatment because they are scared of the dentist. This can have a significant impact on their dental health. The anxiety of dental patients is not just stressful for them, but also for the dentist. Says she: "Working under a state of increased tension may potentially compromise their performance, as well as lengthening appointment times. This is why finding a way of reducing dental anxiety is really important."

According to Dr Koula Asimakopoulou, who was part of the research team, this is a significant difference, and it was present regardless of the type of dental appointment." She also added that their findings suggest that lavender could certainly be used as an effective "on-the-spot" anxiety reduction in dentists' waiting rooms."

The use of lavender oil for soothing dental patients appears to be a novel idea. A spokeswoman for the British Dental Association was quoted by BBC News saying: "Dentists use a range of techniques to help patients feel calm; some specialize in hypnotherapy or counseling - but I haven't heard of anyone using lavender oil." These research findings are new, but the use of lavender as a calming agent is very old.

The next time you visit the dentist, ask if your dentist will use some lavender to help soothe your dental anxiety. What dentist would object to the scent of lavender wafting through the air, if it is going to keep their patients calm and quiet while in the chair!

Tag : dental,dental care,dental plan
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