Many people are fearful of dental procedures. Whether it is the noise of the hand pieces or the trauma from a previous bad experience, it keep them from seeking regular dental care. Here are some tips that may help ease those fears.

Meditation for Real Life

“When confronted with fear of the dentist chair, our minds run wild by conjuring the most terrifying experiences. By staying in the present moment, we can avoid conjuring these worst case scenarios, and instead remain in a calm and centered place.” — Dr. Fern White, a dentist in Australia who practices mindful dentistry.Breathe deeply through the nose and into the belly region.

Place one hand on your stomach to feel the breath move deeply.

Systematically relax the muscles of the jaw, shoulders, head, neck.

Note and feel anything that comes up while breathing.

Be curious about any discomfort or thoughts. What do they feel like? Where do they reside in the body? Note that they move and disappear.

Be aware of the sensations that pass through the body while in the chair — sense them when they come up as opposed to trying to wish them away.

Note that everything passes.

Meditation for Real Life is a weekly tip about everyday mindful moments.