(WFSB) -- Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, many people have skipped visits to the doctor.

In fact, a recent study showed nearly half of U.S. adults delayed their dental care, which is now creating a disaster for some.

“People disappeared for like two years,” said Dr. Mariya Malin, with Wilton Smiles.

Malin is now encouraging patients to get back in the dentist chair.

“Basically, whatever needed to be taken care of a year and a half ago is a lot worse,” she said.

Which means, care is now more extensive and expensive.

“So simple cavities that just needed to be filled are now going to root canal specialists and oral surgeons, more extensive procedures. There’s also some gum disease. Some people missed their cleanings like four times, so now all the tartar build up is causing gingivitis. Bone loss,” she explained.

It’s not only a dental dilemma. Dr. Malin said what’s happening can affect your whole body.

“All the bacteria that builds up in your mouth. The tartar build-up on your teeth goes to your bloodstream and all your other organs, so it’s very important,” Malin said.

As more people are getting vaccinated, she said more people are now catching up on their appointments.

So, for your first visit back, expect to answer some screening questions, get your temperature taken, and you’ll wear your mask right until it’s time to open up.

“We are taking all precautions with the PPE, like we always did,” Malin said.

The proper precautions are being taken so you can feel safe going back to the dentist.

Copyright 2021 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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