There are several reasons why you may put off going to the dentist. Perhaps you don't have dental insurance and feel like you can't afford it, or maybe the thought of sitting in a dentist chair fills you with fear and dread. However, regular trips to the dentist, and learning about preventative dental care, can save you money in the future and may even help eliminate your fear of the dentist chair.
Preventative versus restorative care
Even if you don't have dental insurance, the cost of having your teeth cleaned and getting a thorough dental exam to prevent cavities will likely be much less expensive than needing restorative work done later. Some dental offices offer reduced rates for those who are uninsured. Consider starting a savings account to use for dental visits, and with each deposit you will be investing wisely in your dental health.
Preventative dental visits may reveal a tiny cavity that can be repaired quickly and easily. Cavities ignored only get worse, and eventually you will develop a toothache that forces you to the dentist for a filling or extraction. Cavities eat away at a tooth and cause the tooth to become weak. A weak tooth may break, which can lead to expensive root canals and crowns.
Preventative care means less time in the dental chair
Preventative cleanings and dental x-rays typically take less time than restorative procedures, which means less time spent going to the dentist. This means less time you will need to take off work. If you're a parent, more trips to the dentist for you may require additional money spent on a babysitter for the kids.
Restorative dental work may require multiple visits to the dentist, which can make scheduling appointments around your work day difficult. Missed work days often lead to loss of pay, especially for those who are self-employed or do not have sick time or personal days at their place of employment. Preventative dental care pays off in the long run.
Preventative care is best for those who have dental anxiety or health issues
Preventative care means less time spent in the dental chair for those who experience anxiety about going to the dentist. Less time in the dental chair is also better for those who struggle with back and neck problems or those who have conditions that cause chronic pain. Cleanings do not require the use of numbing agents, which is better for those who are anxious and uncomfortable with needles.
Knowing you have a short visit scheduled for a just a cleaning and exam can ease your mind and calm your dental fears. Just imagine how good you will feel if you rarely have a cavity because you consistently visit the dentist and learn ways to properly care for your teeth.
Investing in preventative dentistry is a wise decision. It will help you avoid lengthy and costly visits for restorative work. Preventative care will also help you gain something you will use every day—a beautiful smile, which is priceless.