Over a Third of British Adults Are Scared of Seeing the Dentist
New research has found that 34% of people in the UK are scared of visiting the dentist, with 79% of these admitting to putting off receiving medical advice and treatment as a result. This raises the importance of mitigating dental phobia and anxiety with regard to visiting the dentist.
The survey, carried out by Fletchers Solicitors, looked into how many people were scared to visit doctors, dentists and opticians and why, and when it came to dentistry the results were fairly interesting.
Of the reasons to not visit, the biggest reason was fears of finding a new health problem that was not known before with almost 69% of the people who admitted they had a dental fear citing this as a reason. A fear of the dentist drill, needles or other equipment was the second biggest reason, with 52% saying this was the reason.
This makes a focus on soothing those fears and ensuring dentistry is as pain free and relaxing as possible so important because many people do not visit the dentist as a result, which means they risk potentially dangerous health issues being ignored or allowed to progress, such as gum disease. This extends to other medical disciplines because positive and timely medical care can only be provided when a patient is at ease and willing to talk to someone who can help them.
Other top reasons for being worried about medical appointments include a bad childhood memory (45%), a bad experience that happened in the past (22%) and the potential pain of a treatment (14%).
It is interesting that given that a lot of bad experience of dentistry usually involve painful or uncomfortable treatment that the actual pain ranks only fifth on the list of people’s concerns, which means that most of the work to improve this will come before the patient even sits back in the chair.