Don't Let A Weak Gag Reflex Stop You From Visiting The Dentist

Dentist Blog

Some people are acutely aware of having a weak gag reflex, which means that brushing their teeth and eating certain foods can occasionally cause them to gag. This is an unpleasant situation that can discourage you from visiting the dentist — especially if you've found yourself gagging during a past oral exam. Unfortunately, deciding to discontinue your dental visits because of your concerns over your weak gag reflex can lead to serious consequences for your dental health and your overall health. Instead of staying away from the local dental clinic, don't be afraid to discuss your gag reflex when you visit. Here are some ways that your dental hygienist can make your exam more comfortable.

Take A Gentler Approach

Most dental hygienists take considerable care to be as gentle with their patients as possible, but if you express concern about your weak gag reflex, you can expect your hygienist to be even gentler with you. This approach can come in several forms. He or she may check in with you frequently to see how you're feeling and whether you need a break from having the dental instruments inside of your mouth, for example. Sometimes, even sharing your concerns about your gag reflex with your dental professional can help you to feel better.

Offer You More Rinses

During an oral examination, it's common for your dental hygienist to spray water into your mouth to rinse it out several times. For some people, it may be necessary to go through this process more often. If you're aware of excess saliva sitting at the bottom of your mouth, you may start to think about gagging — and once you begin to have such thoughts, it can be difficult to control the impulse to actually gag. Your dental hygienist can help the situation by giving you an opportunity to rinse your mouth out more frequently throughout the appointment.

Keep Your Chair More Upright

For some people who have weak gag reflexes, reclining in a vertical position can be a challenge. In such a position, you can feel your saliva at the back of your throat, which can make you start to gag. Your dental hygienist may be able to work on you while keeping your chair at slightly more of an upright position, which may help you to feel less like gagging. By using any or all of these methods, your hygienist can make your appointment more pleasant, which can compel you to visit the dental clinic regularly.

Contact a clinic like Pfeiffer Family Dentistry for more information on family dentist services.


29 May 2019