Why Does Going to the Dentist Matter Anyway?
Visiting the dentist regularly is important for a lot of reasons and overcoming your dental anxiety and phobia is known to improve the health of your mouth, teeth and gums, as well as your general health and quality of life.
If you are anxious, phobic or scared of the dentist and put off going or avoid going altogether then you are putting yourself at risk. Dentists are highly trained. During their training, they do not just learn how to drill, fill and scrape but they learn (a surprising amount) about medicine and how to spot diseases.
Many diseases can be spotted in the mouth before symptoms are felt, for example: signs of heart problems, leukaemia and other cancers.
Some people put up with toothache for a long time before seeking help from a dentist. Whilst rare, it is possible for a tooth abscess to become life-threatening. By the time a tooth has become very painful and perhaps has an abscess, some people prefer to have their tooth taken out rather than having treatment to save it. Sometimes, having a tooth pulled out is the most sensible option, however there can be complications in the long run. When a tooth is removed, the bone begins to shrink away. Over time, the bone may shrink to the level that there is not enough for dentures to hold on to so they move around. This is more likely to happen when all the teeth are removed from the bottom jaw. The dentist does not just identify problems with the teeth and gums or spot diseases, they can advise about the risks of smoking.
Having regular dental check-ups, according to the frequency the dentist advises, is crucial. They will monitor the health of your teeth, gums and mouth, looking out for diseases like cancer. Whilst this all sounds scary, early detection means that problems can be treated early and the best possible outcome can be achieved.
Did you know that people who are scared of the dentist or have dental phobia often have other difficulties? It is not uncommon that they have low self-esteem and low self-confidence. They will often withdraw from friends and family. They may become afraid of going to the doctor in case they need to look in the mouth. They often carry guilt and shame because of how they feel or that they may pass on their feelings to their children. They may also have anxiety and/or depression.