BDA aims to tackle stress in dentistry

14 May, 2015 / infocus
 

The British Dental Association (BDA) has announced it will be undertaking a two-year study into stress and anxiety in the dental profession.

The association made the announcement during Mental Health Awareness Week (11-17 May) and it follows recent work by the BDA that has shown that stress in the profession is on the rise, while job satisfaction is on the decline.

Last year, BDA research showed that around 39 per cent of community dentists and almost half of GDPs reported high levels of work-related stress, compared with an average of around 15 per cent for British workers.

For too long stress and anxiety in the dental profession have not received the recognition they deserve

Mick Armstrong

The BDA has now committed to ensuring that dentists are supported, and will seek to tackle the underlying reasons for low levels of morale and job satisfaction as part of its strategy for the next three years.

Over the next two years, the BDA has said it will be carrying out research on dentists’ experiences of mental ill health and burnout, and the impact these can have on their work and career.

The chair of the BDA’s Principal Executive Committee, Mick Armstrong, said: “For too long stress and anxiety in the dental profession have not received the recognition they deserve. We’ve all seen the cost; with friends, colleagues and in our own working lives. Low morale is real issue that can impact on both patients and practitioners, and we are determined to draw a line.

“We already know that wellbeing among the dental population is significantly lower than the general population. We intend to build on our existing work, so that we can ensure dentists get the support they need when they need it, and so we can start tackling these problems at source.

“We are in the process of finalising our strategy for the next three years. As a trade union and professional organisation we are resolved to put the wellbeing of our members and our profession at the forefront of our efforts.”

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