Why People Didn’t Come Back
Once people stopped coming to the dentist, many people didn’t return. Not all for the same reasons.
Some people didn’t come back to the dentist out of their own abundance of caution. During the pandemic, everyone had to decide what risks they were and weren’t willing to take. With about a million Americans killed by COVID during the pandemic, we aren’t going to fault anyone who decided to stay home for safety reasons.
Other people used the pandemic as a convenient excuse for not making dental appointments. Dental anxiety is widespread, and the way it manifests for many people who know they have to go to the dentist is finding excuses not to go. The pandemic made a pretty good excuse.
Still, other people started avoiding the dentist because they were embarrassed about or afraid of the state of their teeth.
With everyone’s stress levels elevated during the pandemic, some people found they had to cut things out of their schedules. There was so much to do, and it all seemed so overwhelming. Not making dental appointments gave them one less thing to worry about.
Finally, it might have been hard for some people to get back to the dentist’s office. Like many industries, dentistry has struggled with staffing issues during and after the pandemic. Some dentists and hygienists decided it was a good time to retire. Others, facing burnout, took leaves of absence. This made it hard for some people to get dental appointments now that they were looking for them.