When we get anxious our breath shortens and our bodies tense up. When it comes to taking charge of your fear of the dentist, learning how to enjoy the skill of relaxation is a key pillar that supports an easeful time both before and during dental visits.
There is also a feedback loop between the body and the mind. A tense body fuels a tense and anxious mind, and the good news: a relaxed body fuels a relaxed and "in charge" mind.
It is a hugely important and empowering pillar as relaxing often feels counter intuitive when it comes to a fearful dental situation. However, putting this pillar into action together with the other pillars is the key to transforming your fear.
There are different relaxation techniques that I recommend:
Simple to use exercises where you can use a simple equal in and out breath - for instance inhale for a count of 5 and exhale for a count of 5, breathing into your belly using diaphragmatic breathing.
Progressive Muscle Relaxation
This is a simple and effective way to allow your entire body to relax and settle. It takes a little bit of practice to master, but the reward is instant.
There are various exercises that promote relaxation that use guided imagery. This can be a really pleasant way to allow your body and mind to relax.
Watch this space!
Free resources on relaxation, breathing exercises and ways to empowering yourself + more to follow.