I feel I know The Dental Hospital inside out as I have been having treatment here for many months now after two wisdom teeth decided to play silly beggars. Honestly, I've sailed through life with little more than the odd filling but during the last twelve months have been plagued with toothache and dental infections.
I was referred by my dentist, although they also hold a drop-in clinic (similar to A&E) or NHS Direct can book you an appointment. After my referral I waited just two weeks for an initial appointment, which I thought was very good even though the appointment date was almost two months away. When I phoned to confirm the appointment I queried this and the lady on the phone explained that this was because they are so busy, but also advised me that I could push my appointment forward if I found myself in severe pain. I wasn't suffering too badly at the time so left it as it was.
'Helpful' friends had told me that the Dental Hospital is run by students and that they are all butchers, but I can tell you this is not the case at all. On my first appointment I was met by a very posh professor type who took X-Rays of my teeth and explained in detail what he was going to do. There was to be no treatment on the first appointment so he personally took me back to reception and asked them to book me in for a series of treatment appointments spread out over several weeks.
The first treatment was back in August and I can honestly say I was impressed. Yes, it's students who do the work BUT they are overseen by fully qualified dentists who will step in and take over if there is a problem. My gum wasn't numbing after the injections so the student called the dentist over who administered another injection and stayed with me until he was confident that everything was going well. The students themselves were fantastic, as were the dental nurses. I was constantly asked if I was OK, and as soon as one of them realised that I was quite a nervous patient he made an effort to talk to me and take my mind off the pulling and pushing as the other student yanked the offending tooth out.
Afterwards I was made to sit quietly for a while as I was told I was very pale and they wanted to make sure I was OK before they discharged me. I was very impressed with the after care advice because the student obviously knew his stuff and talked me through absolutely any cares or worries I had. He also gave me a well written pamphlet explaining what I could expect in the days following an extraction, and also containing advice on how I could help my gum heal quicker.
My second appointment was not so straightforward as I needed either a sedative or general anasthetic, my wisdom tooth is getting caught on my jaw bone so a little extra work was needed to get the tooth out. I also had an infection in the tooth at the time which apparently made it trickier to work on, I felt a little pressured to have a general but stuck to my guns and had a sedative instead. I hadn't slept much the night before through worry and to be honest the sedative did much the same as an anasthetic and sent me to sleep within minutes, the next thing I remembered was waking up with an aching neck (because of the tugging on my tooth) and a numb mouth.
The pain kicked in the next day as my gum was cut, but I had been warned about this and had a massive supply of painkillers ready!
All in all I simply cannot fault The Dental Hospital, I received excellent care and found all staff to be polite, caring and friendly. What more can you ask for?
Ok, so is anyone going to give a dental hospital a good review? Most likely not! This place is terrible, but if you do end up here you probably have no other choice as I was referred here by my NHS dentist. I had to wait for hours for my appointment and when they put you to sleep (I was having 4 teeth out) there was loads of dental students peering over me as I drifted off. When I was referred there again last year I went private, which was a joy. Avoidif you can!
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