Guest post by Dr. Shelia Shah

How long HAS it been? Do you avoid this important part of your family’s health?

Let’s face it. You know you should. But often you don’t. Yet there’s no need to feel guilty. A large percentage of the rest of the population sometimes falls short here too, despite the fact that visiting the dentist – at least once every six months – should be an important part of each person’s overall health plan.

Dr. Sheila Shah, DMD of Macon Smiles
Dr. Sheila Shah, DMD

“Don’t feel guilty or embarrassed about having neglected your teeth,” says Dr. Sheila Shah of MaconSmiles in Macon, GA. “Just recognize you can change that today with a little action. A simple phone call to schedule a regular dental visit will easily get you back on the road to successfully caring for your smile.”

No one likes to be lectured or berated, and that includes the areas of dental health and home care. Regardless of how long you’ve put off seeing your dentist – or how severely you may feel you’ve failed to floss – a good dentist will be supportive and encouraging of your decision and desire to seek current care for your teeth. The objective for the dentist is to help you keep those teeth for a lifetime.

Your dentist wants to insure you feel comfortable in every way, so you needn’t fear chastisement about how long it’s been since you last visited their office. They will simply be glad you’ve chosen to give attention to your smile now and will assist you with the needs at hand. The role of your dentist is to help educate and assist you with making informed decisions regarding your oral health. After a brief examination, your dentist should be able to explain your options and offer the pros and cons for each approach in a friendly and non-judgmental manner.

It’s understandable, particularly in this economy, that people may reason trips to a doctor or dentist can be avoided unless they are in pain or need immediate attention. But early diagnosis of problems can go a long way in actually saving you money! Early and regular checkups are less costly in the end than trying to fix a problem once it has intensified. Dental disease and gum disease don’t go away when you skip visits. They only get worse and MORE costly. The need for a minor dental filling, if left untreated over time, can progress to the need of a root canal, a crown or bridge. (That’s not even counting the physical cost of suffering through the problem until it HAS to be rectified eventually anyway!) Why not potentially forgo even the cost of the minor filling by taking the less costly route of preventive care? Preventive screenings and routine visits are much more minimally invasive on both the person AND the pocketbook.

If it has been quite some time since you were last in a dental chair, you’ll be delighted to know that numerous advancements in the industry have made the experience much less stressful. Most dental fillings can now be completed without the use of anesthesia. Laser-assisted dentistry allows professionals to more comfortably restore patients’ smiles with NO SHOTS, NO DRILLS, and NO NUMB LIPS! It also conserves more of the healthy tooth structure and saves time, letting patients get out of the dental chair more quickly. Less pain and less anxiety, coupled with faster healing from the laser, make this practice popular among patients.

No more worries. Know that your dentist is there to help you and your family maintain good oral health. A visit to his or her office should be pleasant and guilt-free. So go ahead. Do today what you’ve been putting off. Schedule a hassle-free checkup and check it off your to-do list. You’ll be glad you did!

If you’re looking for “Guilt-Free Dentistry” in Macon, contact Dr. Sheila Shah and her staff at MaconSmiles. They can be reached at (478) 845-1447 or visit their website at



Published by Guest Columnist

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