Need plans for dentistry services

Some provision is needed for dental services. At present only extractions are available, and those only in cases of extreme pain. Plans are needed to provide a service which can deal with lesser problems, if only to prevent them from worsening until conditions improve.

Why the contribution is important

My wife was about to have two problems treated when the surgery was closed, and is increasing pain from one tooth and constantly having to make temporary repairs to the other. I have a crown which has been loose since the lockdown began - not painful but increasingly uncomfortable. We keep asking when treatment for problems not requiring emergency extractions will be available, since we have no symptoms and have not been exposed to the virus, but can get no answers. There must be many other people in the same situation - we met one by chance only today.

by duncanlunan on May 08, 2020 at 04:55PM

Current Rating

Average rating: 4.8
Based on: 39 votes


  • Posted by BillWinton May 08, 2020 at 17:06

    Treatment of problem been part completed for 6 weeks
  • Posted by Ranmor May 08, 2020 at 17:31

    Totally agree and it's very disappointing that the media are not highlighting this major problem
  • Posted by HighlandLass May 08, 2020 at 17:32

    Need a plan I have filled my Husbands filling with a temporary pot from the pharmacy so far so good but wont last forever
  • Posted by kedra May 08, 2020 at 18:08

    Contact the media. I'm a dentist and also find the situation utterly ridiculous. But my indemnity likely won't cover me if I work because it's at their discretion and government advice is to not work without correct PPE. The PPE isn't available, the vaccine isn't ready yet so instead we are in limbo with people suffering at home in pain taking unnecessary courses of antibiotics and painkillers. NHS emergency treatment facilities are inadequate and under resourced for PPE too. If dentistry were treated like healthcare we would recognise that leaving people with infections and in pain isn't acceptable.
  • Posted by Morven1 May 08, 2020 at 18:25

    This is a terrible situation. We need to get the dentists back to work. There will be a huge backlog of work for them. Meanwhile people are in great pain and discomfort - it's like medieval times extracting perfectly saveable teeth. Surely at least dentists could be seeing patients and working out treatment plans and maybe giving them temporary fillings/ crowns. ie things that don't involve drilling. This needs to be seen as a priority.
  • Posted by Anonymous1 May 08, 2020 at 19:22

    A disgrace that dentistry hasn’t been prioritised as an essential service. This is ultimately health care and a complete shutdown for 6 weeks should never have been an option, never mind continuing with it further. An absolute must as the first thing that should be back up and running.
  • Posted by Algregor May 08, 2020 at 20:55

    Dentists and their associated services are vital to our overall health, as well as being important small businesses. Ways need to be found immediately to get them back into action as soon as possible in ways that are as safe as possible for all.
  • Posted by Ginger May 08, 2020 at 21:18

    I agree with these comments. The Centres that have been set up can only deal with a small number of cases and my experience is you will only be seen if your condition is life threatening. Long standing pain and infection don’t necessarily get dealt with. Urgent steps should be taken to support those dental practices who could set up safely and allow them to see patients. I personally am over full of antibiotics which may wear off shortly. I need an extraction which as I understand it is relatively safe if the dentist has the right equipment and PPE. I dont see that it will help curb the spread of the virus not to allow those dental practices who are willing and able to carry out some procedures as well as the Urgent Centres.
  • Posted by CHill May 08, 2020 at 21:37

    Completely agree we urgently need our Dentists back, even if for limited work (like reliable temporary repairs not needing the water jet action etc). When I had to phone my Dental Surgery with a broken back tooth I was disappointed at the response. Was told to go into town and find an Emergency Dental Kit myself. None left in the Chemist and had to buy online and wait for delivery. Really begs the question why our Dentists haven't secured a stock of Kits (basically its dental cement an applicator and no instructions) to send out to their patients with proper professional guidance. It was very stressful at an already difficult time. I can't rely on the home repair and eating is more of an ordeal than a pleasure for …………. a horribly long time I fear if nothing starts up soon.
  • Posted by Lightbulb May 08, 2020 at 22:03

    Dentists have been completely ignored - there has been no financial support whatsoever for independent businesses employing staff. Need support to get reopened and need financial support for the investment to make necessary changes and new equipment and PPE to reopen safely.
  • Posted by Russell May 09, 2020 at 11:01

    The Scottish Government's current policy means people like me are denied the urgent temporary treatment they need to prevent completely unnecessary loss of healthy teeth, and potentially future dental implants. Eating only pureed food for weeks on end is already having other secondary impacts on my health. A temporary filling takes about 5-10 minutes to do and produces minimal or no aerosol, so on my understanding is low risk. I expect taking my car to Halfords for a service put me at far higher risk of C-19 transmission than a temporary filling would. I've asked my MSP and the Chief Dental Officer for Scotland to explain the Scottish Government's decision to halt all but emergency dental treatment and the evidence that supports it. I've yet to see any evidence. This only undermines my trust in government advice and experts, and weakens compliance with suppression measures.
  • Posted by EKopinion May 09, 2020 at 19:17

    I lost a filling at the start of lock down....still no appointments available unless extraction or severe pain. Think the restrictions could be relaxed slightly to allow other forms of treatment
  • Posted by taysider May 10, 2020 at 08:51

    It is imperative that the Scottish Govt relaxes its tight restriction on dentistry - what evidence is there available to justify the current restrictions? Dentists are highly skilled and surely must be consulted on what is ‘safe’ in the current situation .
  • Posted by PKWhite May 11, 2020 at 18:23

    As a practitioner, our practice is keen to help our own patients (and any others) as soon as possible, especially as our volunteer dentists who have worked at the Urgent Dental Centres report they are only using the same PPE as we normally do so it is hard to understand why we cannot see our own patients at our own practice. From the policy document released by the British Association of Private Dentists - As dental professionals, we have existing expertise at implementing universal precautions and a consistently high level of cross infection control. (R. Shah, 2009) and there is currently no evidence anywhere in the world of excess SARS-CoV-2 infections within dentist and dental care professional (DCP) populations. (T. Cook, 2020) (C. Heneghan, 2020) (Chustecka, 2020). Additionally, there are no reports of Super Spreader Events (SSEs) or “hotspots” for patient or dental non-clinical staff member infections with SARS-CoV-2 anywhere, worldwide. (Kay, 2020) And- There is no evidence of SARS-CoV-2 transmission between dental professionals and patients. The most up to date study from Wuhan (Meng at al 2020) suggest no reported deaths from the provision of dental care to COVID-19 positive patients. Studies such as those conducted by Richards (2020) highlight the role of rubber dam in prevention of micro-organism spread, and consequently need serious consideration. This has been adopted by many countries as a reason to keep the profession providing a much-needed service. The UK has created a situation where dental practices have closed, without any scientific evidence supporting these decisions, risking patient health in the process. The financial impact of this is beyond the scope of this article; the reality is, however, dire for many practices nationwide. Many of these practices have the required PPE in place to provide a non-AGP emergency service from tomorrow, instantly easing the workload of UDCs and reducing the need for patients to travel. The financial impacts upon practices acting as a UDC have not gone unnoticed in the national press in recent days, as well as reports of inadequate PPE provision. It would seem standard PPE and procedures prior to the outbreak were working and so any changes to operating procedure should be evidence based and not based on a theoretical risk. Dentists and their staff should be assuming the patient is carrying something infective and used to thorough hand cleaning and cleaning of the surgery between patients. The only negative to all practices reopening and treating patients would be the pressures on already scarce PPE equipment. It is well established that patients, generally, would prefer to have their dental treatment carried out by their normal dentist who they have developed a trust in. Hopefully with reasonable and realistic risk assessment to protect staff and patients we can get back to something approaching normality in the dental profession. Our triaging so far has identified a growing backlog of patients with issues that will have to be addressed before routing care can be resumed.
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