Dental Psychiatry

Psychological problems relating to receiving dental treatment are wide spread. It has been reported that about half of all dental patients experience some anxiety towards their dental visits. It is important to recognize the role that dental fear plays, as it can lead to delay in seeking necessary dental treatment, cancellation of appointments and poor cooperation in the dental chair. Dental fear is one of the most troublesome patient management problems for the dental team, causes distress for the patient and results in high stress levels in dentists. Dental specialists, often come across patients, who present with complaints of pain, abnormalities of sensation, movement and salivation involving the mouth and face, which are a manifestation of underlying emotional disturbance and not due to a clearly identifiable physical cause. Early and appropriate recognition of such emotional distress would benefit both the individual and the health service.