A: No, of course not, but it is a bad strategy in my opinion! From time to time a gentleman (or less frequently, a lady), will come to the office in discomfort. He or she will tell me it has been years since their last visit and they ‘only come to the dentist when it hurts’. When I hear it, I ask the Young Dentistry team to brew the coffee and call my wife to let her know I’ll be late. It is usually an indicator that there will be disease progression that will require our attention and we’ll be getting to know our patient very well in the coming weeks and months. Most dental problems do not have symptoms until their later stages. A cavity needs to be big and close to the tooth’s nerve for it to start hurting. By that time, a root canal and crown may be required rather than a small filling. Gum disease does not feel painful at all as it progresses but, at its worst, teeth can be lost if detected too late. Most worryingly, oral cancer is mostly silent and very dangerous if it goes undetected. So my advice is to spend less time and money at the dentist by coming in for regular preventative care.