Up to 20% of patients suffer with dental stress, also called dental phobia or dental anxiety. Dentists have responded by offering anxiolysis, conscious oral sedation, and a number of amenities to make patients feel confident and comfortable in the dental chair.
Some dentists tell jokes, some hum or sing, and others explain every procedure before they begin. A Harvard study recently found that hand signals could become yet another strategy in reducing dental stress.
The Cleveland Clinic Department of Dentistry has developed some hand signals for such use. You can download the DENTISIGN signals here.