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Seeing a dentist for regular checkups is just as important as seeing a doctor for health examinations, many experts say. But when economic conditions worsen, dental visits are often one of the first things families cut from their budget.
During the recent economic downturn, dentist offices across the country reported seeing fewer patients, but as economic conditions continue to improve, many dentists say they are seeing patients return for procedures they had put off in recent months.
Dr Lyndsie Thurnau, an office manager at a dentist's office in Granite City, Missouri, told the Suburban Journal that her appointment book has been much more crowded the last few months.
"Some of the patients feel the work has to be done now," she told the news source. "They've put it off and now are saying, 'OK, I will do it.' Most of them are blue collar workers."
Rodger Levin recently wrote in the Journal of the American Dental Association that economic downturns affect dentists more now than they used to because they rely more heavily on elective procedures that many cash-strapped patients would decline.
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