The dental hygienist and the NHS

  John B 18:44 15 Jul 08

My wife has NHS dentistry. A little while ago, after a routine appointment, she was instructed by the dentist to visit the dental hygienist which would incur a £45 charge.

We couldn't (and at the moment, still can't) afford this so it didn't happen.

Today, the dentist has given my wife a bit of a grilling about this, seemingly saying she had failed to follow his advice.

So, my question is, is this okay? Even in recent times my (different) dentist has carried out a scale and polish as part of the routine check. Is the rise of the dental hygienist common and are you charged separately for it even if you are lucky enough to have a NHS dentist?

I'd be grateful for a bit of feedback please.



  beeuuem 18:57 15 Jul 08

My last visit to my NHS dentist in May was for a routine check with a scale and polish thrown in and cost me nothing.

  laurie53 20:25 15 Jul 08

Had a routine (NHS) check last month and the recommended scale and polish was completed this afternoon, though the hygienist is on her hols and the dentist herself completed mu treatment.

Cost some £7 odd.

  John B 20:59 15 Jul 08

I just hope to get a wider view because I can't help wondering if this particular dentist is pushing private care on NHS patients.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 21:00 15 Jul 08

Band 1 course of treatment – £15.90
This covers an examination, diagnosis (e.g. x-rays), advice on how to prevent future problems, and a scale and polish if needed.
Urgent treatment, when you need to see a dentist immediately, also costs £15.90.

  gardener 21:30 15 Jul 08

Our dentist (NHS) says he cannot charge NHS prices anymore otherwise he would be out of business. So I ended up paying £300 for a cap on my tooth (at least I think it was the term, this was two years ago, I haven't been back since because he said I need another two teeth capping and I just can't afford it).

  oresome 21:35 15 Jul 08

I visited the NHS dentist yesterday and had the usual 6 monthly inspection and scale and polish.

Cost £16.20

  peter99co 21:38 15 Jul 08

If you do not use your dentist each six months for a check up you may find they will not see you at all. A condition of some dentists who offer NHS treatment.I am not sure if a filled tooth is an option for you but lack off treatment may cause decay that will result in a lot of pain,then a bill for extraction, more pain in the wallet even.

  gardener 21:46 15 Jul 08


Well I've missed my 6 monthly check-ups once or twice and I haven't been warned yet, that's probably because he makes a fair bit of money out of me. It's not that I don't look after my teeth, it's my teeth that don't look after my wallet.

However, what I would like to know is, if I'm paying National Insurance, tax etc. etc. why is the dentist unable to charge me at NHS rates?

  spuds 23:13 15 Jul 08

If a dentist can charge a private patient £300 for a cap, why should they do that same work for £194.00 under the NHS fixed rate!.

To find out more click here

  Forum Editor 23:29 15 Jul 08

probably wrongly, that dentists try to sell the hygienist's services a little too enthusiastically. It's almost as if 'the hygienist is here, and he/she needs to earn a living too, you know'.

I might feel more inclined to fork out £45 for a session with the hygienist if I hadn't just forked out the best part of £450 for root canal work on one tooth.

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