Do you do NHS work?
We are a fully private practice, with no NHS provision. The reason we opted out of the NHS contract in 2006 is because we felt that the focus was a political one and nothing to do with patient care. This contract dictated that the dentists had to see a lot of patients per day and work very fast. This is not to say that all NHS surgeries are bad and uncaring, but you may find that an NHS dental appointment feels rushed. Time allocated to an examination appointment in an NHS surgery is typically between 5 -10 mins. These constraints also may influence dentist’s decisions which are not always the best decisions for your oral health.
Why is the treatment more expensive?
Sometimes it isn’t! But generally you do pay more. However, you also get a great deal more of our time – and in this respect you are getting much better value for money. Our aim is to get you to a position where you have a healthy mouth requiring minimal maintenance. This is different for different people, e.g. gum disease patients may need to see the hygienist every 3 months. We have a handful of patients who only need to come for an inspection once every 2 years. Everyone is different. However, when you are in this happy position, it is the most inexpensive way of looking after your teeth. We are most certainly trying to get away from the gradual decline to no teeth at all which has historically been the way of dentistry.
How much is a filling?
Not all fillings are the same. Generally we charge for time but what if your teeth are too sensitive for scaling and so need to be cleaned at the same time whilst you are numb? What if you require the adjacent tooth to be extracted? There are so many differing requirements and treatment plans which increase the value of that time for you. A ball park figure is somewhere between £40 and £173. The point is that you need a full assessment prior to undertaking any work – to ensure it is the right plan, using the correct choice of material for both the tooth and for you.
What about other fees?
Your initial consultation is a 30 min appointment costing £75. This fee includes all necessary digital radiographs (x-rays). At this appointment we make a plan. For some this is simply a written tick list outlining treatment. Others require a more detailed plan with different options. Some require preventative advice. Everyone is different.
Routine examination/ scale and polish appointments cost £59 (30 mins). Hygiene appointments (Intensive) cost £59 (30 mins). Hygiene appointments (maintenance) cost £39 (20 mins).
Denplan is a company which administers a monthly payment plan. Being on a plan spreads the cost of your dental treatment. Importantly, it also encourages you to attend regularly. Studies have shown that patients on a plan tend to have better oral health than those not on a plan for this very reason.
What about Children?
We prefer children to go on the Denplan “Plans for Children”. This is because it covers their care and saves us having to make decisions on cost. You can, however pay “fee per item” if you prefer.
We hope this answers some of your questions. Please do not hesitate to contact the surgery for additional information or to book your initial consultation.