What is clinical hypnosis and how is it used in dentistry?

a woman sitting in dental chairMany people have heard of hypnosis but it is often viewed with scepticism. It is often grouped together with magic tricks so people either ‘believe in it’ or not if they have only experienced hypnosis as entertainment. In fact, hypnosis can be very useful in the fields of medicine, psychology and dentistry. It is a precise and well-researched method of utilising the patterns of the brain to create certain useful states, including feelings of great calm, access to hidden memories and rereversing the effects of amnesia.

Used properly, clinical hypnosis is an excellent tool for practitioners, like those at Care Dental Platinum, to help people visit the dentist. For nervous patients in London, it can revolutionise their approach to the dentist and create positive experiences that mean they can visit regularly without difficulty.

How does it work?

Hypnosis is a large subject with many different aspects including accessing the subconscious mind and inducing a relaxed state. These are the two we will look at today because they have the most relevance to visiting the dentist for nervous patients in London.

Our brain has different states. If we looked at someone at different stages of relaxation using a brain scan or electroencephalogram (EEG), we would see different types of brainwaves which are related to the different states. These are the common brainwaves:

  • Beta – alert and engaged,
  • Alpha – relaxed and reflecting,
  • Theta – drowsy,
  • Delta – asleep.

Hypnosis, via talking, a sound or a visual cue, can help a patient relax to the point that they are between the theta and alpha brainwave states. This makes it easier to access the subconscious mind as the conscious mind is drowsy and relaxed.

If someone needs to visit the dentist for nervous patients in London, they usually have negative associations with dentistry in their subconscious mind. These need to be replaced with positive experiences in order to free them from anxiety. A dentist who uses clinical hypnosis can do this once they have the patient in a relaxed state. They can associate their current visit to the dentist with relaxing places and images in their mind so that the body’s biological and psychological responses are consistent with a good experience.