Social Dental Network

Who’s Going to Win the Dental Attendance Award in 2011?

In Dental Care on January 25, 2011 at 4:00 AM

We’ve heard all sorts of reasons for people canceling their dental appointment – from the dog at my car alarm clicker and I can’t get in, to we just had an earthquake. Canine and tectonic forces aside, we seem to think the following four reasons are the main causes for people not keeping up with their regular dental visits. Which, by the way – should be every 6 months thank you very much!

Because you want your car to run efficiently, you take the time and care to change the oil every 3000-4000 miles. Because we love and cherish our pets as members of the family, we are diligent in maintaining their health and veterinary visits. Don’t cheat yourself into thinking your teeth aren’t as important. You’re incisor is connected to your cheekbone, and your cheekbone is connected to your neck bone, and your neck bone is….you get the point.

We’ve taken this time (and yours) to list our once again purely unscientific data supporting what we believe to be the top 4 reasons people don’t keep up their normal dental visits. Please feel free to share your thoughts – we know responsibilities and real life get in the way of a lot of things, we’re just trying to take a humorous jab at our motivations for missing dental appointments. We’re all guilty, the hope is to not make it a pattern of neglect.


“I don’t have time to go the dentist. I have the kids to drop off at practice, I have the cable guy coming at 4, and I still don’t know what to make for dinner.” Sound familiar?

It seems with advancing technology, our time is always at a premium. We agree, and often times fall victim ourselves to the same daily perils of having a family and a career to worry about. But, shouldn’t our health be held at a higher premium than our time? Just think about it….our time will really be limited when we’re not healthy. Get the picture? And don’t think dentistry doesn’t add up to overall health – we know you’re smarter than that. Information is too easily accessible these days to keep the blinders on, take control of your health. And technology has, and will continue to make it easier for all of our trusted doctors to share info and formulate a complete picture of our personal health and wellness. The time issue doesn’t hold water, we know you health is more important than spending how many hours per week on Facebook…?


Now here’s one we can get behind – comfort. Nobody likes being uncomfortable, it’s like sitting through a root canal….OR….rather what is USED to be like sitting through a root canal. Times have changed as we all know, take a look around. This applies to sitting in the dentist chaise lounge as well. From soothing earth tones to warm wooly blankets, sleep dentistry, aromatherapy, new age music, massage therapy…the dental office visit is becoming more like a relaxation therapy session, than tooth mechanics. And it’s not just fluff – root canals, the most dreaded of all dental procedures – have even become passé. Things like diagnostic lasers, intraoral cameras, and earlier detection of dental problems (judging you keep up your visits) now even make root canal anxiety a thing of the past.

It’s Gonna Hurt

A tax audit hurts. Stubbing your toe hurts. There are varying degrees of hurt – but what hurts more? The thought of what could happen on your normal dental visit, or the dread of what needs to happen since you haven’t been to the dentist in 12 years? What we’re talking about here really is fear – you’re afraid to go to the dentist, admit it. It’s called Dental Anxiety. Next time you’re feeling that way – think about this, which fear is worse….the fear of having to sit through a cleaning and polishing on your next dental visit, or the fear of having to sit through an extraction, root planing, gum scaling, drilling and filling, on your first visit since Fonzie jumped the shark:

Nothing is Wrong/It Doesn’t Hurt….yet

Yeah, now this is good solid old-school reasoning we can agree with. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it – simple. The only problem with this age-old axiom is that it does not apply to dentistry, or healthcare…or auto mechanics. Again back to the car analogy, however unromantic it is to compare your precious dental health to that of a four barrel big block – preventative maintenance is the key to limiting future pain (and expense). If it does in fact hurt, it is already too late, time to suck it up and do the right thing. It will only be worse – hurt more, cost more – if you continue the ongoing pattern of neglecting your teeth, or engine sludge.

There you have it, a completely unscientific view of our most popular reasons for not seeing the dentist on the regular. You have something to add? Please feel free to post comments to our wall, or drop an email – we can’t wait to hear what keeps you from the dental chaise. And by all means share this important info with your friends and family!


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