Mental wellbeing ‘is worse now than during the pandemic’

01 November, 2023 / infocus
 Will Peakin  

More than half of dental professionals in the UK (57%) who took part in a survey say their mental health is worse now than it was during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the Dental Protection survey of more than 1,300 dental professionals in the UK, one in two (50%) are also pessimistic about the future and more than half (56%) are considering their future in the dental profession due to mental wellbeing concerns.

“The pandemic created an exceptionally tough time for dentistry, and we know that many practices are still grappling with the aftermath,” said Dr Yvonne Shaw, Deputy Dental Director at Dental Protection.

We all have a part to play in supporting the dental team

“It is hugely concerning that so many dental professionals who endured the challenges of the pandemic feel that their mental wellbeing is worse off today.

“We all have a part to play in supporting the dental team and looking to restore optimism and purpose in the profession. Many practices offered wellbeing support to dental teams during the pandemic. Wherever possible, this should continue.

“I would also encourage members facing mental wellbeing concerns to make use of our 24/7 counselling service and other wellbeing support which is a benefit of membership with Dental Protection. The service is provided through a third-party partner and is completely confidential.”

Dental professionals who participated survey commented anonymously:

  • “I am considering retirement a little earlier than I would have done a few years ago. It is the pressure of conforming to so many ever-changing rules whilst trying to give the patients the best and most appropriate care. The pandemic was hard but the guidance when it came was clear.”
  • “I found the first part of the pandemic the most stressful time when I could only give telephone advice. But now, there are too many patients and not enough time, so it’s close.”
  • “During the pandemic there was a sense of everyone striving towards a common goal. Now it’s back to watching our backs and defensive dentistry.”
  • “Patients’ expectations are very high since the pandemic. Dentists are leaving the profession and patients do not appear grateful when they are seen.”

Tags: Dental Protection / wellbeing

Categories: News

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