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Who is More Afraid of the Dentist – Women or Men?

Posted on March 15, 2012 | in Dental Anxiety | by

The verdict is in, the debate is over, but the answer may surprise you.

No matter the individual triggers sparking feelings of dental fear, and despite the ways in which we can overcome our collective dental anxiety while saving ourselves money in the long run, there is reportedly one segment of society that experiences some degree of dental dread above all others.

Missed dental appointments, cancelled check-ups, unneeded stress ; these are just some of the side effects experienced by those who experience dental anxiety, aside of course from declining oral (and overall) health.

Check out this circular cycle of dental neglect, courtesy of

In these days when we’re publicly chatting away through micro earpieces and showing off our latest retina recognizing tablet PC to remain nameless, nobody should be ignoring dental care.

The technology is in place to make even a root canal painless, and to reverse a dozen years of dental neglect with a lot less time…not to mention cost.

So Who Won this Dental Battle of the Sexes?

If you know any women in their 40s that may be the victims of overwhelming dental fear, do them a favor and throw a dental intervention!

Yep, the nail-biting anticipation has come to an end – according to a recent study out of Australia, research has found women in their 40s are more likely to suffer dental anxiety and phobia than any other age group.

The Sydney University study found women in that demographic were most likely to have a “perceived traumatic dental experience” that rendered them incapable of having a filling, extraction or even a routine check-up without general anesthetic or other sedation.

In the article, lead researcher Dr. Avanti Karve said women were more likely to be predisposed to dental anxiety – even if they hadn’t had a bad experience in the chair.

“Dental anxiety is very real and complex and it should never be downplayed,” she said.

“A recent survey found a person with severe dental anxiety waits on average 17 days to make an appointment when in severe pain, as opposed to three days in the remaining population.”

How can we help anyone we know reduce their fear about going to the dentist?

Share with them ways ‘the dental patient experience’ has changed over the years; supply them with recent news illustrating how patient comfort and convenience are now tops among dental practice concerns…and maybe take some time to refer and accompany them to your trusted, professional, gentle, friendly, engaging, dynamic dental team of choice!

Have you any more tips to share about reducing dental anxiety?

How about some success stories from the formerly fearful dental patients?


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+Chris Barnard is Managing Editor of, a patient-centric Social Dental Network blog dedicated to enabling the digital dental health conversation - and the eradication of the cavity creeps.
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  1. […]   We are currently scheduling “We Cater to Cowards” dentist appointments at our Arden Square Sacramento dental office. We have both midweek and Saturday dental appointments available. Call us today at (916) 488-1933. Don’t be such a scaredy cat!   Connect With Us!   Portions of this post were republished with permission from Dental Patient News. […]

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