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Coping with a Sensitive Gag Reflex at Your Dental Visit


Posted on 11/25/2015 by Nicholas Dose
A patient suffering from a sensitive gag reflex interfering with her dental examination. Is a sensitive gag reflex keeping you from visiting the dentist? It is important to see your dentist regularly, so if you are concerned about gagging during your appointment, consider trying some of these helpful coping strategies.

Breathe Through Your Nose

During your dental procedure, be sure to focus on taking deep breaths through your nose. If you are congested due to a cold, take a decongestant prior to your appointment or use nasal sprays in order to open up your airway.

Think of Something Distracting

When your dentist is working in your mouth, think of anything that will keep your mind away from what is going on. Think about a happy memory, recite stories in a foreign language, or practice your multiplication tables. It doesn't have to be something important; it just needs to be enough to take your mind off of what is happening in your mouth.

Listen to Music

Your dentist may have music playing that you can listen to, and if not, consider bringing in your own. Put in your earphones, play your favorite band, and let the music take you away.

Let Yourself Drool

Sure, drooling might not be extremely attractive, but allowing your drool to fall out of your mouth will likely help to keep gagging at bay. This is a much better option than trying to swallow your excess saliva when work is going on in your mouth.

Talk to Your Dentist

If you have a very sensitive gag reflex, the most important thing you can do is to talk to your dentist. Your dentist can take steps to try and help with your gag reflex, including talking to you to provide a distraction or sitting you up straighter.

If you have a severe gag problem, administering the happy gas may be a good option, so please contact us for more information or to schedule a dental appointment.

Call us today
(503) 765-7300
Nicholas Dose, DMD
601 1st Street Suite A
Lake Oswego, OR 97034-2370


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