If there is anything that could prompt people to think again about how they look after their teeth, it’s the knowledge that getting hold of a dentist could be a difficult thing to do.
This has been a major problem in recent years, especially when it comes to seeking an NHS dentist. With so many practices going private and the overall number of dentists not keeping up with demand, growing numbers people face a struggle finding affordable treatment when they need it.
Recent examples of NHS dentists going private include the AW Brown Dental Practice in Felixstowe which, as the BBC noted, is one of the last NHS dentists in the town. The practice said a “chronic lack of investment” in NHS dentistry had made the switch unavoidable.
Another case is that of Avondale Dental in Grange-over-Sands. Cosmetic Dentistry reports that Avondale has 5,800 patients, who either face going private or searching for an NHS practice in south Cumbria, where they are very scarce.
Whatever your own local situation, the prospect of higher dental bills means you may want to do more to protect your long-term oral health.
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For many people, the importance of maintaining great teeth is not just down to problems with finding an NHS dentist. Dentophobia - a fear of dentists - is very common and can be linked with a range of other fears, such as trypanophobia (a fear of needles and injections).
This can make some people far less willing to visit the dentist unless things get so bad they have to make a visit - at which point the experience is going to be much more unpleasant anyway.
For that reason, by taking the best possible care of your teeth you can keep yourself away from the dentist a bit more, saving money and avoiding a scary and unpleasant ordeal.