Has it been a while since you visited the dentist? You’re not alone. According to a survey, although the majority of Americans agree that oral health is important, 85.9% children and 64.9% adults only visit the dentist once a year.
This is also true for some of our new patients, including some who had not sat in a dentist chair for years. The good news is they have since been returning for check-ups and treatments after we helped them pinpoint what was keeping them away, and then we made them feel comfortable enough to return.
We recommend that you do the same to avoid any irreversible damage to your teeth and gums. Let us know today if any of the following reasons resonate with you, so we can help you find a solution.
1. Fear of the dentist
The fear of going to the dentist is a huge barrier for the children and adults who suffer from it. It’s 100% real and is taken seriously. The best solution for anxiety and fear of the dentist is to choose a dentist who makes you feel comfortable in the chair, even if this means opting for sedation as the last resort.
2. Lack of time
Many people struggle to find the time to get to a dentist, especially for dental emergencies. Perhaps they can’t take time off work or are too busy caring for others. One workaround is to find a dentist who works late and on weekends. If that’s proving too hard, then it’s time to find a dentist closer to work. This way you can attend appointments right before/after work and during your breaks.
3. Too embarrassed
At times people are too embarrassed to show their bad teeth or chronic dental problems. They think the dentist would judge them or make fun of them. Perhaps a dentist did treat them poorly in the past, but not all dentists are like that. A caring and compassionate dentist who loves treating their patients will not judge you for your condition. Ask for recommendations and choose a dentist whose focus is to help you feel and look better, not scold you over the state of your oral health.
4. Not sure if it’s needed
Many people don’t think check-ups are necessary, especially if they’re not experiencing any symptoms. The lack of pain and cracks are often mistaken to mean “my mouth is healthy”, but because you might skip those six-monthly check-ups, you’d easily miss the early signs of potential issues. By the time you come in with a toothache that could have been avoided, you might need to spend more money on treatments. Everyone, including those wearing dentures or who don’t have any teeth, should get at least two dental check-ups per year.
5. Money is an issue
Low-income earners and those without health insurance are least likely to visit a dentist. Interestingly, many are eligible for a dental treatment repayment plan—it’s just they’re unaware of this and the flexible payment options available to them. Others may have limited funds and prefer to spend it on their children first and put their own dental care needs on the back burner. If you’re stressing about the costs of dental care, ask us about our flexible payment options.
6. They simply forget
Don’t you just hate it when you book something, and then you forget about it? Ideally, you’d want a dentist who has the ability to send you a reminder ahead of your booking. This way, you’re more likely to turn up, right? When choosing a new dentist, ask whether they send text and email reminders closer to the date. Then you can insert the booking into your calendar and set an alarm. It’s the easiest way to make sure you’re there when you say you’ll be.
People who visit the dentist keep their real teeth longer…
Our friendly dental team wants to help you keep your teeth and gums for LIFE. That’s why we go above and beyond to find an appointment time that works for you and then help you feel comfortable whether you’re anxious about seeing a dentist or worry about how you’re going to afford the treatment. All you need to do is contact our team today at (805) 644-0600 to chat about what’s been stopping you from coming in.
Our articles are not intended to be a substitute for professional dental advice, diagnosis, or treatment with your dentist, dental hygienist, or other medical professionals. We recommend always contact our professional team if you or the person you care for has any concerns about their oral health.