Dental Surgery Hove
Dental Surgery East Grinstead

01342 313886

01273 711507

Treating Nervous Patients

Being ‘afraid of the dentist’ may mean different things to different people. Some people have specific fears about actual areas of treatment or pain, others don’t like the thought of being out of control, some people find the sounds and smells upsetting and others worry about stories they have heard from friends, family and colleagues. The good news is that Concordia understand their patients’ fears and can do a great deal to make dental treatment an acceptable, normal part of life.

Nervous Dental Patients


The following questions are the most commonly asked by our patients:

I am terrified of the dentist what should I do?

Firstly, don’t panic. There are many people who are scared of visiting the dentist, and so much can now be done to help you. Good dental health is an important part of your overall well-being so it is essential that you visit the dentist at regular intervals.

I had a bad experience as a child what is it like now?

Dental techniques have improved so much over the last few years that modern dental treatment can now be completely painless. If you have not been to see a dentist for some time, you will probably find that things have improved a lot since your last visit. The general attitude is likely to be more relaxed, the dental techniques and safety procedures will be much better and the equipment more up-to-date.

What can be done to help me?

Many dentists now practise a number of relaxation techniques. We offer patients an oral or intravenous sedation, both treatments leave you feeling relaxed, although you are still awake, you are unconcerned by your surroundings and recovery time is quick. For a more holistic approach, Concordia Dental highly recommends psychotherapy/hypnotherapy treatment with Dr Sharie Coombes and herbal medicine with Marion Mackonochie to help with any dental anxieties you may have.

I haven’t been to the dentist for a long time. Will I need a lot of treatment?

Years ago it was normal for people to need fillings every time they went to the dentist but things have changed for the better now. Fluoride toothpastes have made a large impact on tooth decay and you may be surprised at how little treatment you need.

How do I start going to the dentist again if I am very nervous?

It may be helpful for you to see our practises and meet Dr P. Grobbelaar before you arrange an appointment. We will do our best to restore your confidence by taking special care of you.


Dealing effectively with dental phobia

Dr Sharie Coombes is a fully qualified, CNHC & GHR registered/accredited and experienced professional senior clinical hypnotherapist and psychotherapist working in private practice and in the NHS. Using hypnosis and other psychotherapy techniques, she is experienced in helping adults and children to manage even severe dental anxiety.

A visit to the dentist is a really important part of our healthcare and yet, for some of us, it can feel like something to be avoided at all costs because of the anxiety and fear that it provokes. For those affected, your heart rate rises, your head spins, shaking sets in and sweating floods over you along with waves of nausea. No wonder you don’t like it! We are programmed through our primitive ‘fight and flight’ mechanism to respond this way to a serious threat and dental phobia certainly feels like a serious threat. In fact, dental phobia can be a serious threat to your general health, your oral health and your sense of well-being.

As Dr Sharie Coombes explains, "Having a dentist working on your teeth can feel rather intimate but with modern anaesthetics, sedatives and techniques, a visit to the dentist nowadays is probably easier than it has ever been. Dentists know that some people find their visit overwhelming and attitudes have changed. The old smells and sounds are a thing of the past...just as your fear is about to become".

Sharie can work alongside you to teach you all you need to know and all you need to do to prevent the anxiety from getting in the way of the treatment you need. Hypnosis conjures up all sorts of ideas but, in truth, the self-hypnosis you will use is practical, easy to learn and very powerful. Anyone can learn the techniques. People often worry they may be immune to hypnosis but if you can develop phobia then you can experience hypnosis because the 2 things require the same ability to use the imagination – it’s just that phobia develops from a misuse of the imagination whereas self-hypnosis and hypnosis develop from the therapeutic use of it. All you need is the desire to overcome the fear. There are no dancing chickens, no strange ‘command’ words and no swinging watches. You are fully awake, conscious and in control the whole time. And what’s even better is that you will be in charge of using your own self-hypnosis which you can move in and out of as you choose so that this new skill is yours to use independently and in any situation that once may have felt frightening or anxiety-provoking.

So don't put off your health and dental treatment any longer – get in touch now and you can benefit from the work you need to get done on your teeth as well as from feeling safer, more in control and more confident in just a few sessions with Sharie. In no time, you will be smiling on the inside and on the outside with a new lease of life.

Children and Young People:
01273 252559
Twitter - @drsharie


Marion Mackonochie, BSc, mNIMH - Medical Herbalist

Marion is a qualified medical herbalist and member of the National Institute of Medical Herbalists. She combines up-to-date scientific knowledge with a holistic approach and the powerful yet gentle action of herbs and remedies that have been used in this country for hundreds of years. Her aim is to help you take control of your own health and to find ways to maintain health and wellness naturally.

For many people, visits to the dentist can cause unnecessary anxiety, which makes the whole experience more stressful. There are many herbs that have been used traditionally to promote feelings of calm and to reduce anxiety and much of this traditional knowledge has been backed up by modern clinical trials. Herbal remedies don’t cause the side effects that are commonly caused by the conventional anxiety medication valium, such as dependence, fatigue, constipation and problems with balance. For example, a trial carried out using passion flower to help with the anxiety associated with spinal analgesia found that it reduced anxiety without causing tiredness or affecting ability to move.

In conjunction with Concordia Dental Practice, Marion is offering 30-minute mini consultations at the dental practice before your appointment to discuss herbal remedies for dealing with the stress and anxiety associated with your dental treatment. The cost of this service is £35and that will include the herbal remedy.

You can read more about Marion at her website here:

You can contact Marion by email at or by phone on 07939 106 385.


Aslanargun P, Cuvas O, Dikmen B, Aslan E, Yuksel MU. Passiflora incarnata Linneaus as an anxiolytic before spinal anesthesia. J Anesth. 2012 Feb;26(1):39-44.

Sarris J, McIntyre E, Camfield DA. Plant-based medicines for anxiety disorders, part 2: a review of clinical studies with supporting preclinical evidence. CNS Drugs. 2013 Apr;27(4):301-19.

For further details about our services or to book an appointment please contact us:

East Grinstead Practice

138 Holtye Road, East Grinstead, West Sussex RH19 3EA

01342 313886

Hove Practice

51-53 Church Road, HOVE, BN3 2BD

01273 711507