A recent study shows men spend more money at the dentist, although they visit the dentist less often than women. Dr. Ed Schooley is the dental director for the Delta Dental Plan of Iowa. Schooley says men end up paying more to their dentist because they make fewer trips for preventative care. He says women do visit the dentist more often than men, and he says that probably has something to do with their schedules and their role as the family’s champion for health care. Schooley says the macho image some men want to portray could be another reason they don’t get check ups.He says it might have something to do with the “tough guy” image we often see associated with males. Schooley says studies by the Academy of General Dentistry show men of all ages are more likely than women to have periodontal disease, including tender gums that bleed, persistent bad breath and loose or separating teeth.He says as problems become bigger, so does the cost of treatment. He says getting preventative maintenance can help men avoid more pain. Instead of doing sealants and small fillings, they end up with root canals and a crown, or the lack of cleaning can lead to expensive gum surgery. Schooley says increased demand for services pushes prices up too so men are helping push up the cost of dental services by not doing preventative maintenance.
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