In the UK, patients have the choice of seeing an NHS dentist or a private dentist. Take a look at the difference between the two services and find out what benefits private dentists can offer.
1. Cosmetic Dentistry
The focus of NHS dental services is on protecting the health and functionality of your teeth. Private dentists place equal importance on oral health but also understand that how your smile looks can have a big impact on your confidence and wellbeing.
From white fillings to teeth whitening, private dentists also offer cosmetic treatments to make you feel good about your smile. They can also offer straightening treatments to correct the tooth positioning of both kids and adults.
2. Longer Appointments
NHS dentists are limited in how long they can spend with each patient. Private dentists typically offer much longer appointments, giving you the chance to talk through any concerns you have about your oral health. If you feel rushed during your NHS dental appointments, consider giving private dentistry a try.
3. More Options for Pain Relief
All dentists in the UK offer pain relief during treatments like tooth extractions and fillings, but not all treatment options work well for all patients. Private dentists offer a greater range of pain relief options, including ones that can help people who have needle phobias.
If dental phobia prevents you from going to the dentist as often as you should, look for private dentists that offer sedation dentistry. This type of dentistry involves putting you to sleep or giving you medication to make you feel sleepy and calm during dental procedures, which can be very useful for people who struggle with anxiety.
4. Flexible Appointment Times
Whereas many NHS dentists offer appointments only during standard office hours, private dentists are more likely to stay open late or on weekends. Being able to get an appointment when it suits your schedule can mean less time off work, fewer interruptions to your home life, and fewer times when you have to put off an appointment because you simply can't fit it in.
5. Low Costs
Many people assume that private dentistry is much more expensive than NHS dental treatment. However, the costs can be more similar than you expect. Some private dentists offer a membership that allows you to spread the costs over the year. Always ask about prices when registering with a private dentist as costs can vary widely between practices.