Brits were more likely to avoid the dentist during the pandemic than patients in any other European country

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A new survey has revealed that dental patients in the UK were more likely to avoid going to the dentist during the pandemic than patients in any other European country.

New research published by GSK Consumer Healthcare in association with IPSOS showed that 43% of patients in Britain have visited a dentist less frequently since the start of the pandemic. This is the highest figure in Europe.
In addition to low attendance rates throughout the Covid-19 crisis, 18% of participants said that they would be unlikely to go to the dentist in the next six months.

Dental experts recommend routine checks every 6-24 months depending on the oral health status of the individual. People who are susceptible to oral disease and those who have active symptoms of gum disease and decay are advised to attend regular appointments.

The statistics will be alarming for dental and public health experts, many of whom have already raised concerns about the potential for an avalanche of dental issues and an increase in oral cancer cases. As well as reducing the risk of cavities and gum disease, routine checks also provide dentists with invaluable opportunities to spot signs of other conditions, including mouth cancer. As public awareness of symptoms is poor, dentists are worried that many cases could be missed while routine services are not widely available.

Another concern is the increase in snacking during lockdowns. The GSK survey indicated that 30% of Brits have been snacking more frequently since the pandemic hit. Grazing and eating unhealthy foods increases the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.

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