Dental fear can ruin lives – as revealed in C4 show

Dental anxiety was under the spotlight in a recent programme on Channel 4 called Never Seen a Doctor*. It followed a couple in their 50s who had avoided visiting the dentist following traumatic experiences in the dental chair.

Dental fear – also called dental phobia, dentophobia, dentist phobia and dental anxiety – is the fear of dentistry and of receiving dental care.

People who are very fearful of dental care often experience a ‘cycle of avoidance’ in which they avoid dental care until they experience a dental emergency requiring invasive treatment, which can reinforce their fear of dentistry.

Terrible consequences

In the C4 show, Janice and Greg hadn’t seen a dentist for 15 and 30 years respectively. Greg had developed severe gum disease that had left him with just nine, rotten teeth and serious gum and bone deterioration. His lack of teeth had resulted in him wasting away over the years, whereas Janice’s dental problems – and eventual complete lack of teeth – meant she’d become morbidly obese on a diet of soft, fatty foods. The couple hadn’t kissed in years because of their advanced dental deterioration.

As dental professionals at Goldsworth Road Dental Centre in Woking, we found it incredibly sad that their lives had been so damaged by a terrible experience with a dentist.

Our Surrey dentists and dental hygienists are ideally placed to help soothe dentophobics, so please don’t suffer in silence.

Please don’t neglect your teeth

We urge anyone who is fearful of the dentist not to neglect their teeth. As well as the problems highlighted in the TV programme, research has linked poor dental health to heart disease, bacterial lung infections, premature births, diabetes and strokes, meaning regular visits are vital to maintaining good general health and wellbeing.

If you have any concerns about your dental health or that of a loved one, please contact us today on 0844 576 9956 or 01483 495 303. We can provide lots of helpful advice and would be only too happy to help.

* Never Seen a Doctor is available on demand.