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Brits wait an average of nine days before arranging a medical appointment about something that’s bothering them.
New research has found millions of people could be avoiding seeking help for a health issue – because they worry they will get bad news, struggle to get an appointment or don’t want to waste the doctor’s time.
Around six in 10 are currently experiencing some kind of physical discomfort including toothache, headaches or chest pain.
And almost one in five have bleeding or pain in their gums regularly yet haven’t done anything about it.
It also emerged British adults have an average of two health issues that they are currently putting off getting checked out.
Adam Parker, from Oral-B, which carried out the study, said: “Unfortunately, health problems, big and small, are an inevitable part of life.
“But, it’s common sense that pretending they aren’t happening isn’t going to fix anything.
“There are plenty of reasons why we avoid dealing with our health problems, but looking after your health proactively can prevent issues arising in the first place”.
The study also found most leave it between two and six days before getting headaches, earaches and sickness looked at by a doctor.
But one in 10 will wait up to a year before seeking medical attention for bleeding gums.
Of the 40 per cent who have suffered with bleeding and painful gums, four in 10 have never had the symptoms assessed.
One third also admitted to avoiding the dentist over the last year altogether because they don’t have the time, the money or have had a bad experience in the past.
Another one in three are also avoiding their GP because they don’t want to discuss the problem.
The lack of importance placed on their own health means 62 per cent of Brits are suffering with their health problems in silence.
This ‘head in the sand’ attitude isn’t serving the nation well though, as three in 10 have had a condition worsen because they haven’t had it attended to.
Chest pain is most likely to see Brits seek help from a health professional, with 36 per cent addressing it within a day.
But three in 10 would leave it for up to six days before seeking advice.
Other complaints that tend to be prioritised are eye pain, persistent coughs and stomach aches – which were all deemed more critical to have assessed than gum pain.