When was your last dental visit? Do you go religiously every six months or only when you have a problem? Dental anxiety is the most common reason people avoid the dentist, and that puts them at risk for many dental diseases including gum and periodontal disease and cavities. More often than not, avoiding the dentist for too long will have you facing a much bigger problem that was once an easy fix. Also, if you wait until you’re in excruciating pain, the visit will most likely be uncomfortable.
So, why are people so afraid of the dentist? Here are some common reasons.
- Bad childhood Dental experience: This is the most common reason for dental anxiety, but thankfully, it’s becoming less prevalent. Dentistry has come a long way in patient comfort, and today, the patient’s well-being is a top priority. Also, with the introduction of fluoride and sealants, the incidence of decay has dropped dramatically in children.
- Painful Dental Experience: This is the second most popular reason for avoidance which is very unfortunate these days because there is no reason for a painful experience at the dentist. However, if you wait until the issue is really bad, it may be very difficult to maintain comfort during treatment.
- Poor self-esteem related to Dentistry: Some people shun the dentist because they feel embarrassed about their mouth. They might hate the way their teeth look, have bad breath, a sensitive gag reflex, or chronic pain.
- Fear of Needles: Also very common is a Fear of needles which certainly makes sense. Who wants to get a shot in the mouth?
While these fears are common, they must be dealt with because dental issues and disease don’t just disappear. In part 2 of this post, we’ll discuss ways to conquer these common fears.