Almost 70% of dental professionals experience increased anxiety as a result of the COVID-19 crisis

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A survey conducted by the Dental Defence Union (DDU) has revealed that almost 70% of dental professionals have experienced heightened anxiety levels as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.

A poll of DDU members suggested that around half of participants felt that they were unable to spend sufficient time with patients, while 67% reported feeling stressed or anxious on a weekly basis during the pandemic. 

Dentolegal adviser at the DDU, Lesley Taylor, said that dentists are used to working in high-pressure environments, but claimed that the pandemic has caused anxiety and stress levels to rise. As dental teams embrace a new way of working, there is bound to be apprehension about new measures and welcoming patients back after a prolonged break, and many practitioners may also be anxious about lost income and health concerns related to the ongoing risk of infection in the wider community. 

As research highlights high stress levels among dental professionals, the DDU has launched a new e-learning course, which is designed to help individuals to recognise signs of stress and anxiety and to outline steps people can take if they’re feeling overwhelmed, scared or under increased pressure. 

The survey also revealed that nearly half of dentists go to work even if they don’t feel well. Many put in the hours in exchange for job satisfaction. Over 70% of those surveyed said that they felt they were making a positive difference to their patients. 

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