Not many things make me upset anymore. I am over my fear of the dark. I have never been afraid of heights or horror movies. I am not afraid of snakes, spiders, or insects. The one thing I am truly petrified of is going to the dentist. I absolutely hate the dentist. When my mom tells me I have a dentist appointment in a couple days, my stomach drops. It has not stopped since I was a little boy either. As I continued to get older, I began to hate the check ups more and more. The day of an appointment I will wake up with a sick feeling in my stomach and will act like a little girl once I get there. A particular bad memory is when the assistant was digging in the back of my mouth, and after I told her to take a break, I vomited all over her. It was a truly traumatic experience. So the question is… why is it that going to the dentist is so commonly hated amongst people around the world? The people are all nice, and they do try and treat their patients with care so why do they receive so much hate?
Personally, I am the only one in my family that has trouble with the dentist. According to Jelly Share, many reasons why people hate the dentist is due to the anxiety of maybe having a cavity, or having to get a tooth pulled. Some other reasons are fear of needles and drills. Dental care related fear is very common, affecting 10 to 20 percent of adults in the United States, causing sometimes complete avoidance of dental care in general.
Recently researchers have hypothesized that the reason why children have fear and anxiety over the dentist is mostly due to their parents. It is an obvious fact that a child is going to be influenced by their parents behavior. My dad is not afraid of the dentist, and whenever he would bring me for my appointment, I would feel much more comfortable knowing that he was only right outside. My mom on the other hand was totally different. Like myself, she despises the dentist and gets nervous when she gets there. This could be where my fear comes from.
According to the article on Science Daily, psychology researchers at the University of West Virginia found that part of the reason that there is anxiety due to dental care is because of genetic influences inherited from parents. This is the first study that could suggest that fear of the dentist could be due to genetic factors. Cameron Randall and Daniel McNiel later in the article reported that the genes that influence for of pain likely also influence fear caused by going to the dentist. This finding is important to better understand what the causes dental fear and phobia. Clearly, the anxiety that goes along with going to the dentist affects many people from all ages. The more studies and research that is done concerning this issue, the more we can learn what the best way is to make people like me not fear the dentist anymore.