Take it from Elite Manhattan Dentist Dr. Nina Izhaky:
Many Americans dread the dentist, but choosing a dentist who puts you at ease and values prevention and total health wellness can make all the difference. Learn how!
By Dr. Nina Izhaky
As a dentist in Manhattan, I deal with some pretty gutsy people every day, as you can imagine. But guess what? I still see new patients now and again who have real fears of treatment or the idea of seeing a dentist. They are usually in pain by the time they build up the courage to come into the office, so the pain brings them in. Which means that there are a whole lot of people out there – in New York and across the country – who never even make it to the dentist due to their dental phobia! And that’s really bad news, since avoiding the dentist can really harm your health.
But first off, what exactly is dental phobia? In a general sense it is defined as fear, anxiety or stress that’s associated with visiting a dental office. Things like needles, drills or the dental setting in general can sometimes trigger dental anxiety. This phobia can be caused by all sorts of things, from specific, traumatic dental experiences in the past all the way to serious cases of generalized social anxiety.
But being scared to visit the dentist often results in delaying or avoiding dental treatment, and this is the main problem. In fact, an estimated 9-15% of Americans avoid seeing the dentist completely due to anxiety or fear. And that’s about 30 to 40 million people Americans – far too many.
Going to the dentist, getting preventive care, and addressing oral health issues is critical to your health. Letting your dental phobia keep you from going to the dentist or getting recommended care can lead to numerous negative outcomes, including:
- Tooth loss
- Cavities and tooth decay
- Stained and discolored teeth
- Chipped, breaking, and cracked teeth
- Gum disease and recession
- Chronic Oral Pain
- TMJ, and
- Sleep apnea.
It is also the case that avoiding the dentist lets oral cancers go undetected for too long and puts patients at serious risk for more aggressive and advanced cancers. Do not take that risk!
There are all sorts of ways to deal with dental phobia, the most important being visiting a dental office that understands your fears and knows how to deal with them. For more information check out Dr. Izhaky’s website: www.tribecadentalstudio.com
Listen to Dr. Izhaky and Mark here:
and you can watch them here: