When your sister admitted that she hasn’t been to the dentist in six years, you couldn’t believe it. She mentioned that because she didn’t think she had any symptoms of dental problems, everything was probably fine. You begged her to check and make sure for her sake, and it sounds like she’s open to finally booking an appointment. While you are pleased to hear it, you can’t help but wonder if her real reason could be dental fear. Keep reading to learn from your dentist in Canton why that’s the actual root of the problem for many people.
What Are Common Reasons People Give for Avoiding the Dentist?
There are probably a million reasons people might try to give, but here are five pretty common ones:
- Fear: “Dentophobia” is a real thing. It can have many causes. Maybe a person witnessed someone else who seemed to be in pain at the dentist or they have a general fear of sharp objects.
- Lack of Insurance: Someone may believe they simply cannot afford a dental visit. They might not think their insurance will cover treatment or maybe they don’t have any and have not checked on potential alternatives.
- No Symptoms: A person might think they feel just fine and have no reason for an exam. There could be trouble ahead and they don’t see it coming. A cleaning is always important.
- Forgetfulness: Someone will say they always forget to make an appointment. A well-placed sticky note reminder could remedy that.
- Shame: If you haven’t been to the dentist in a long time and are dealing with bad breath and/or dental issues, embarrassment or concern about being judged may keep you away.
Why Is the Dentist Not a Person to be Feared?
- Treatments can be explained in advance. If you are worried about what happens during a cleaning and exam at the office of your dentist in Canton, ask the hygienist to walk you through the process before any work begins.
- Seeing the dentist as a real person can be helpful. A dentist is a person just like you with hobbies and favorite foods – not a mysterious figure behind a mask. Having a quick chat about non-dental topics can be comforting when you first meet them.
- Dental tools shouldn’t be feared. If you are concerned about the tools used during an exam, ask the hygienist to explain to you what each one is used for before the cleaning and exam begins.
- The average dental appointment lasts an hour or less. If you are scheduled for a cleaning and exam, it’s not going to take up your whole afternoon. Having your vehicle serviced will usually take longer than maintenance for your mouth.
Most people who don’t go to the dentist’s office probably believe their reasons for avoiding it are legitimate, but their teeth and gums won’t be interested in any excuses when plaque starts to take its toll. Making and following through on that one appointment could mean everything when it comes to getting more comfortable and conquering dental fear!
About the Author
Dr. J.D. Robison studied dentistry at Purdue University, the University of Michigan, and the University of Detroit Mercy. He has completed the core curriculum at the prestigious Dawson Center for Advanced Dental Studies and has also trained at the Las Vegas Institute. If dental fear is potentially holding you back from getting the treatment you need, Dr. Robison would love to explain treatments to you in advance or perhaps discuss any dental tools that make you feel anxious. Just let his staff know about your concerns when you schedule an appointment for preventive dentistry on his website or by calling (734) 453-6320.