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Moan about NHS Dentists - sorry it has to be done!

Hey, you all know how upset i was last week when I was told by a dentist that I had to have root canal and a crown on my front tooth....

Well, it just did not sit well with me. The more I thought about it, the more uncomfortable I felt. He spent all of 5 minutes with me, did not show me my x-rays, just spouted I needed a root canal and a crown, that it was infected, and can I come in first thing the next morning. he was SO pushy and so uninterested in how upset I was.

I said no, because I was stunned that out of nowhere, just a weeks discomfort was now the loss of my tooth and a crown - I needed to 'mentally prepare', as I never want to lose my front teeth....I feel very strongly about having teeth. So we ended up booking up for Tuesday just gone.

over the weekend, I thought about it. You NEVER drill into a tooth with an infection. I know first hand, that can be fatal. I lost a friend who had a tooth drilled with an infection - only for a small cavity as well. They were dead within days. So that put me off and made me so angry. I also did not like his pushiness about getting me back in the chair as quickly as possible. He just wanted to rush me through at whatever cost - no interest in my personal satisfaction at all.

I listened to my gut and I got a second opinion today.

I went private this time. The dentist was stunned how fast my tooth went, and while he did agree I needed a root canal and that there was an infection he was absolutely shocked I was told I needed a crown. He was VERY angry too.

He said there is no reason at all a crown would be needed. They could do the RC with microscopes, etc., and save the tooth if I went to an endodontist who does only root canals.

The cost is only £100 more for this procedure then the hack job wanting to put a crown in. Money well spent. He wanted £400 for a crown, for £505 I keep my tooth. money well spent if you ask me!

It just makes me SO angry - this other guy was just after a big fat bill that he could stick to the NHS, and take out of our pockets. He would have billed about £2000 to the NHS for that!

I will never go to another NHS dentist. Ever. I shudder to think about it, had I just blindly listened to him and gone back the next morning. I might not even be here to type about it now.

So, I am so happy and so relieved that I will not be losing a front tooth (I was seriously gutted about that) and am now on antibiotics taking care of the infection.

I am considering writing the NHS. I just think some poor old dear who would or could not stand up for themselves would go through this type of treatment, unecisarily. I think its robbery and disgusting.

i think the NHS hates yanks. Or the providers anyway. I am ALWAYS going to battle with my doctors and dentist. I just won;t take what they try to fob off. Its unacceptable!

So, once again - thanks for all your support last week, when I spoke of this initially, and thanks for listening to my rant now.

Now I can keep :D <----like that! :D


Rant over. :)
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Thats terrible BL. I am flabbergasted. We put our faith in these people. I wouldn't even think to question something like that. You really are a very handy person to know...lol. I might consult you before making any decsions in the future ;-). But seriously, I didn't even know about the drilling an infected tooth scenario. Scary!! And I agree with you, it also makes me sick that these people are butchering peoples teeth for a fat payout. Its obscene.
Glad that you saved your tooth though hun :)
Thanks Asil.

Not many know of the risks of drilling on infected teeth. We were SHOCKED beyond belief when this happened to our friend.

I worked for a couple of years, along time ago, in a dental lab, where we made teeth. (I was the tooth fairy!)

You learn an awful lot about dentistry there. more then you want - but sometimes its stuff worth knowing. ;)



Surgically happy.
There is little to no difference between nhs and private dentists - most still do both work, or if they only do private they used to do nhs work and only stopped because they make a lot more money doing it privately. There are good and bad dentists is all - and it sounds like the guy you went to was shockingly bad. Of course, if dentists just did nhs work, then these bad dentists wouldn't get work at all....

Hope you're feeling better soon, BL. You absolutely should write to the NHS to complain. If more people complained, the service would only improve.
There is little to no difference between nhs and private dentists - most still do both work, or if they only do private they used to do nhs work and only stopped because they make a lot more money doing it privately. There are good and bad dentists is all - and it sounds like the guy you went to was shockingly bad. Of course, if dentists just did nhs work, then these bad dentists wouldn't get work at all....

Hope you're feeling better soon, BL. You absolutely should write to the NHS to complain. If more people complained, the service would only improve.

I sort of agree- however - going private, I am paying £505. No government or tax payers going to be topping that up.

Had I gone NHS, I would have paid £400. BUT - the government would have then topped that up £1000-1500 quid after the dentist billed them. That comes out of our wages and taxes. At a pretty hefty slice too!....so its not really that much more expensive to go to a private dentist.

private dentists also have more time to give the patient. NHS - its a "food-mill" artmosphere. Get 'em in, get 'em out.

I do agree there are bad private dentists too. But, if I am honest, I have yet to find a good NHS dentist. I am sure they are out there, but in 8 years, and 4 different ones - I can't say anything positive of my experiences I am afraid. Not one good thing. And I think thats shocking.

If I told you of my experience with the emrgency dental surgery in Worthing, it would make your skin crawl and I bet no one here would ever go the dentist again. Absolutely frightful, shocking and disgusting it was.

People in the states think health/dental care here is FREE. Heck - I thought that. Until I saw my husbands paycheck for the first time. It is FAR from free. You should get hwat you pay for, and you pay alot, but receive very little. In my opinion. :)

See, i will do whatever it takes to keep my own teeth. i feel very strongly about that. If down the road it goes wrong and they have to put a fake one in, then so be it. but it won't happen without a fight.

I am paying the extra £100 though, not to have a crown - there will be nothing done to my tooth aside form the root canal and filling it...it will be entirely mt tooth.

Fingers croseed it lasts. With proper care, he felt it should last for years, if nto forever. Its a sturdy tooth, and since it is such early detection, that is going to help as the cavity shoudl be relatively small. Thats how I understood it anyway,. :)



Surgically happy.
National insurance isn't just for the NHS - it covers pensions, builds your entitlement to social security, and more:

National Insurance : Directgov - Money, tax and benefits

I wouldn't swap the nhs for any other health service that I'm aware of - it's far from perfect but private systems allow millions to fall through the gaps every year around the world. Insurance companies appear to hold all the power - and see nothing but the bottom line. The rich/well off still have the option to pay for private healthcare if they choose (they still have to pay NI but then as I said, NI covers much more than the NHS).

I'm a tad confused about what the private dentist has told you - as private dentists make much more than nhs dentists, I'm not sure how a private dentist will in this case get between 1/3 and 1/4 of what the nhs dentist would have got.

But anyway, it's all about being happy and comfortable with the treatment you're recieving and you're absolutely right to not want anything to do with this dentist. I am certain that if my dentist was to treat me as they did you, I'd be looking to go private too. (since it's next to impossible to get onto an nhs dentist's list).
Yeah ANdy, health care is a mess in all countries. Or most. It used to be good, and affordable in the states, but hey have mucked it up big time too.

I agree, the NHS is an ideal situation, but it is greatly flawed. In theory and on paper, superb! BUt like most good ideas, it has ended up under staffed and over booked. ANd the patients are the ones who suffer.

But it is great, when it works for you - and I have found you can make it work for you, if you don;t just roll over. I guess thats whay I get so frustrated and angry. People do roll over. And the NHS should know this, but turn a blind eye and seemingly allow it to happen. But if you are willing to put in, stand up and not give in, it can work for you.

And too right - shant ever be seeing that other dentist again!!

Hope you are feeling better too after your hard day. :)

Just my thoughts, and I'm sure there are good NHS dentists, as there are good and bad in every profession, race, religion etc etc, however - like BL - I have yet to find one! I have been absolutely butchered by NHS dentists in the past, and now nothing on earth would get me to go to one. Luckily I have found a brilliant private dentist, who tells me approximately 50% of his work is undoing or repairing the botch jobs NHS dentists have done.
Anyway - rant over, and glad you went for that second opinion and it was good news BL :)
Have been with my NHS dentist for some 20 odd years now, and before him, was with the previous one for quite some time. Wouldn't swap him for the world, absolutely fantastic - explains everything, doesn't do anything for the sake of it and doesn't see me any more frequently than he needs to! All my family are with the same practice, albeit with different dentists....and I've yet to hear one complaint from anyone (friend, family or sttranger) about them.

My only complaint? That they're so good and so popular that people are registered with them from all over the country and now their lists are so full that my husband can't sign up with them!

There are some fantastic NHS services around!
having avoided the dentist for 12 years, when I decided the time had come to brave it last year I had to go private. Had 7 fillings (well-it had been 12 years!) One fell out yesterday. I must say, the pain is something special. Trying to find an emergency dentist today but not having much luck so far.

The NHS is great in some ways but a pain the the **** in others. They really shine when it's a life or death situation but the rest of the time it's a bit of a battle I find. You have to play the system but there are so many people who just take the Drs word as gospel and never question what they have to say.

I hope you get sorted soon and manage to keep your teeth. Some days I just wish I could have all of mine pulled out and start again but I know the real thing is the way forward!! xx
Just to belatedly add my two penneth, until 18 months ago I had always used NHS dentists. I hadn't liked any of them and would never have recommended them to friends, but carried on going because I was unaware of any alternatives. I had been with the last NHS dentist for maybe 10 years, he commented on a couple of visits, you have a gum infection - but offered no treatment or advice. I was not in pain, my gums weren't bleeding, I wasn't having any problems at all with my teeth, gums, breath, mouth or anything. Next time I visited another 6 months down the line he made the same comment, I grabbed my courage and said well what do we do about it then? He said nothing we can do, eventually your teeth will fall out, and then we can fit you false ones. No emotion fromhim just a plain statement of fact. I was devastated.
Like BL the though of losing one tooth horrifies me let alone all of them. I was in shock. Total shock. Then I hit Google and within 5 days I had seen 5 different private dentists, amazing what you can find when driven (so much for the 2nd opinion) who all more or less said I had lost valuable time in treating this disease. If it had been treated to start with it would have been a simple matter, but as it was advanced it would take time to bring under control.
The treatment involves several sessions of DEEP cleaning, expensive but better than losing my teeth. If done initially, 1 deep clean would more than likely have been sufficient, instead of the several I have had to have. If the NHS dentist could not do this procedure why did he not recommend someone who could. If I get false teeth he loses the client anyway.
Strikes me it would cost much more (in taxes etc) for not offering the right advice. I would love to sue the dentist concerned nevermind just report him to the NHS.
sorry to hear some of your horror stories guys! i'm a dental nurse so i get a bit obsessed with hearing about people's dental history lol. Blonde Logic, not denying your friend's situation (that's really horrible btw) but as far as i know you can drill into infected teeth. normally they give antibiotics to start, but if the pain is really severe then they will open the tooth to relieve the pressure. i agree about nhs dentists though, i'm surprised they even offered a root canal, they don't normally do them coz it's not worth it for them :rolleyes: I hope you get it sorted though, but it's true your teeth are so important and personal, if you know what i mean, and if someone told me i needed a crown with no real exlanation i'd be angry too

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