Essential oils have seen an amazing awakening in the past few years. No longer are essential oils considered some fringe, new age, hippie snake oil.
A tremendous amount of clinical research has been conducted over the past several years to scientifically validate the benefits of using essential oils in medicine and dentistry.
So, for today, let’s turn our attention to other ways we can use essential oils to help us navigate the path to optimal oral health.
Use orange oil to help reduce ‘pre-dentist’ stress and anxiety
Several clinical studies have shown that the smell of orange essential oil prior to going into a dental appointment helps to soothe stressed nerves and calm any anxiety associated with the appointment. (1)
Any dentists reading this should absolutely jump on the opportunity to purchase essential oil diffusers for their offices. After all, if you were a dentist (with all the stigma around dentistry), wouldn’t you want to provide every possible method (proven by research) to lower the anxiety of your patients and provide them a more positive experience?
In one study, researchers found that not only did the smell of orange essential oil reduce anxiety, but it also elevated the mood in patients. Another study found that women benefited even more than men. So, ladies, definitely give this a try the next time you’re heading into a dental office (especially if you have a negative association with dental appointments). (2)
Use lavender to help reduce stress AND pain
Here’s a helpful tip for you if you really don’t like ‘the needle’.
To take these stress reducing benefits one step even further, research has shown that lavender also provides a calmer mood pre-dental appointment, and it provides substantial pain relief for any needle insertion.
“Lavender aromatherapy in volunteers provided a significant decrease in the stress levels… In addition, it significantly reduced the pain intensity of needle insertion.” (3)
Even if you’re not the type who gets stressed from the thought of an approaching dental appointment, being in a calmer, better mood during a dental appointment can only help.
How we can easily leverage these gems for our families
Simply drip some orange and/or lavender essential oils onto a tissue to hold near your face while waiting in the office for your appointment. Or, diffuse some in your car while driving there. You can even put a few drops on a scarf or shirt collar so you get the benefits before and during the appointment.
Who knows, perhaps wearing these helpful aromas into the dental office will help the dental staff to have better moods, too??? We see no harm in helping them to be in a better mood while they work on (and also help) us! Sounds like a win/win for a better dental treatment experience!
For those of you with young ones, this could be a really helpful strategy. If we can help the next generation establish a more positive association with the dental chair, we can help them realize that dentists aren’t bad people.
The bottom line is, many people avoid the dentist because of a really poor or negative association they’ve developed with these professionals/the chair/the office, etc., and this is a big barrier that can prevent folks from having a healthier mouth. We get emails almost weekly from people who haven’t been caring for their oral health and who have avoided the dentist for many years. This type of situation rarely ends with a pretty story.
One quick off-topic note: If you take vitamin C daily, be sure to not take vitamin C in the morning before the dental appointment where you know you’re going to have some work done. Vitamin C speeds up the breakdown of dental anesthesia, which can make for a more painful dental experience. So, take plenty of C after the appointment, but not before.
What about after the dental appointment?
But you already knew we were going to say that!
It’s true, though. The balanced formula of the HealThy Mouth Blend does wonders for gum tissue that’s been overstimulated (aka beaten up) during a dental appointment. And if you have any spots that are extra sensitive, the blend helps to soothe any nerves that are stuck on ‘FIRE’.
So, there are a few easy-to-apply strategies that you can use to help bring more peace and calm into any upcoming dental appointments.
Is this helpful for you? What do you do to help reduce anxiety before and during a dental appointment? Do you think it’s unethical to apply some essential oils in the presence of your children to help them cope with the upcoming dental appointment?
Please share this article if you know someone who could benefit.
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