• Wednesday, September 28, 2022

HEADLINE STORY

Denied dental care, UK adults turning to DIY dentistry – Survey

“DIY dentistry has no place in a wealthy, 21st century nation but today millions have no options, and some are taking matters into their own hands.”

iStock (Representative Image)

By: Kimberly Rodrigues

According to a new survey of 2,234 UK adults, almost a quarter of people have been unable to access care from an NHS dentist in the last year, resulting in many turning to “DIY dentistry” the Independent reports.

The poll suggests that just over a third (36%) said they got an appointment with a dentist and 40% reportedly said they had not tried.

Based on research conducted on behalf of the Liberal Democrats, it was found that despite trying, 23% of people have been unable to get an appointment to access NHS dental care in the last year.

Among the 533 people who could not get a dental appointment, 21% reportedly said they had conducted “DIY dentistry.”

Additionally, about 27% of this group have claimed that they paid for private care due to a lack of NHS access.

Commenting on the poll, British Dental Association chairman Eddie Crouch reportedly said, “DIY dentistry has no place in a wealthy, 21st century nation but today millions have no options, and some are taking matters into their own hands.

“These access problems are not inevitable. This horror show is the direct result of choices made in Westminster.

“We’ve heard promises of change, but any progress requires action on a decade of underfunding and failed contracts.”

For some patients DIY dentistry could include using a filling kit from a pharmacy, however, in some extreme cases, people have even claimed to have pulled out their own teeth.

Health spokesperson for the Liberal Democrats, Daisy Cooper reportedly said, “It is now or never to save our NHS from a winter of crisis that will put patients at risk.

“This heart-breaking rise in DIY dentistry is further evidence that this Government simply doesn’t care about our vital local health services.

“It is a national scandal that people are forced to pull their own teeth out because our public health services have been starved of funding.”

In response to this, a Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson has reportedly said, “The number of dentists practicing in the NHS increased by over 500 last year, and we are continuing work to improve access to dental care for all NHS patients – backed by more than £3 billion annually.”

The spokesperson also informs, “The Health and Social Care Secretary has set out her four priorities of A, B, C, D – ambulances, backlogs, care, doctors and dentists.

 

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