Dentist Problems and Who to Complain to

28
Found 8th Aug
Someone in the family is having a problem with their wisdom teeth coming through, and because they're too close to the other teeth, they're cracking the molars.
They've been in pain for a while, but couldn't get an emergency appointment for weeks.
Finally, they got an appointment for an extraction, but that couldn't be done today because there's a bad infection in the root, so they've sucked the pus out, scraped out the damage and packed it with antibacterial stuff.
They were told by the dentist to go back after 10 days, but she couldn't make an appointment until 4th September.
Now any infection in a tooth is bad enough, but this seems to be a bit serious not to give them an appointment when the dentist says.
I'm worried about the infection going to the jaw considering the problem.
Can anyone give me some advice on this and whether the dental practice is out of order?
Thanks.
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I'm a dental nurse and can assure you it's not the dentist is out of order or you have a righteous receptionist as someone commented, a 1 hour long appointment is a chunk of a session that is not always readily available especially if the practice is normally booked far in advance. Any extraction can or cannot be complex hence why a lengthy time was requested,every tooth and patient is different. Packing the tooth was to reduce inflamation and infection otherwise attempting to anaesthetise the area may not be successful. If your family member is in pain they should contact the practice saying they cannot wait till their appointment date and ask what advice the dentist can offer,they may have a cancellation list they can be put on but would need to be willing to accept an appointment perhaps at short notice and not always a time of day that suits. Emergency services may only prescribe antibiotics or painkillers and suggest they contact their dentist anyway. Hope this helps
28 Comments
I maybe wrong, but I think you can go to A&E when something gets so serious.
My sister in law once went to see emergency dentist and I don't know the full details, but they couldn't operate. She was advised to go to the hospital instead and they did the job.
Did you stress that the dentist said they MUST have an appointment in 10 days?
An alternative is to contact the hospital if the pain is bad again. It's not ideal but they would probably refer you to an emergency dental service.
The NHS is under severe pressure and dentists especially so. This sounds more like a 'righteous receptionist rather than an issue with the dentist himself.
Try and resolve it with the practice rather than go the official complaints route or they may find thence without a dental surgery.
Have you tried calling NHS direct? They could probably advise you if you feel you need a&e
SquirbyDude8 m ago

I maybe wrong, but I think you can go to A&E when something gets so …I maybe wrong, but I think you can go to A&E when something gets so serious.My sister in law once went to see emergency dentist and I don't know the full details, but they couldn't operate. She was advised to go to the hospital instead and they did the job.


I'm not quite sure whether it's that serious atm, but I'm a bit worried about the dentist not checking out the infection after 10 days.
There's been a load of cases where it's led to septicemia.
The receptionist said that they couldn't fit her in earlier because there wasn't a 1 hour appointment available.
I know my dentist has cancelled my appointment in the past due to a case like this.
SquirbyDude9 m ago

I maybe wrong, but I think you can go to A&E when something gets so …I maybe wrong, but I think you can go to A&E when something gets so serious.My sister in law once went to see emergency dentist and I don't know the full details, but they couldn't operate. She was advised to go to the hospital instead and they did the job.



No, you're right. OP's family member should go to A&E, but take a book for the wait.
mrty6 m ago

Did you stress that the dentist said they MUST have an appointment in 10 …Did you stress that the dentist said they MUST have an appointment in 10 days?An alternative is to contact the hospital if the pain is bad again. It's not ideal but they would probably refer you to an emergency dental service.The NHS is under severe pressure and dentists especially so. This sounds more like a 'righteous receptionist rather than an issue with the dentist himself.Try and resolve it with the practice rather than go the official complaints route or they may find thence without a dental surgery.


Yes, she had to make an appointment with the practice when she was seen by the dentist, but no go, they wouldn't give her an earlier one.
SquirbyDude9 m ago

Have you tried calling NHS direct? They could probably advise you if you …Have you tried calling NHS direct? They could probably advise you if you feel you need a&e


I think that the infection is more of a worry.
The pain is bad with her also.
I couldn't imagine the pain of wisdom teeth coming up and cracking your back molars.
chimp14uk7 m ago

I'm not quite sure whether it's that serious atm, but I'm a bit worried …I'm not quite sure whether it's that serious atm, but I'm a bit worried about the dentist not checking out the infection after 10 days.There's been a load of cases where it's led to septicemia.The receptionist said that they couldn't fit her in earlier because there wasn't a 1 hour appointment available.I know my dentist has cancelled my appointment in the past due to a case like this.



If she is in severe pain, A&E is the right option. Exaggerating that pain based on your worries about potential complications may not be right, but it's better than septicaemia.
This is par for the course with dentistry. I had an issue with a tooth once and called for an emergency appointment, they were able to see it quickly and diagnosed it there and then but the appointment to actually sort it out was miles away.

Their only advice was, 'don't eat on that side'.

Fortunately my issue didn't yield any pain, but similar to you my concern was more about any ill effect of leaving the problem in place for so long.
If they're lower molars then no dentist will remove them unless they have to as they're scared of damaging a nerve that runs along the jaw line. You tend to have xrays and then a ct scan to check where the thing is.
I had an impacted wisdom and it had to be rotting the tooth in front before the hospital would cut the crown off and stitch the gum over it.

Best option is the hospital as they tend to do the tricky jobs. Upper teeth aren't an issue.
chimp14uk14 m ago

I think that the infection is more of a worry. The pain is bad with her …I think that the infection is more of a worry. The pain is bad with her also.I couldn't imagine the pain of wisdom teeth coming up and cracking your back molars.


Maybe more of a reason, if it's at risk of infection they will act (or should) and may also issue antibiotics.
Is the emergency dentist your own? If so then as I mentioned earlier, call 111 and they maybe able to find you another dentist elsewhere at another surgery.
CALL NHS DIRECT THEY CAN GIVE YOU DETAILS OF AN EMERGENCY DENTIST. Sorry for caps....
it's not grounds to complain because you are "worried about the future" re: sepsis.

also, if the infection was confined to the rotten teeth pockets - and not within flesh, then it sounds like they gave her treatment ? - "packed with antibacterial" (as opposed to tablet to treat the body) and have arranged an appointment.

teeth shouldn't "crack" unless they are weak already (imE - bloody popcorn kernels), also A&E has been open for the duration ?.

what else can they do ? - you can request painkillers (or antibiotics if needed) from g.p. or dentist ?
Ban_Anas59 m ago

it's not grounds to complain because you are "worried about the future" …it's not grounds to complain because you are "worried about the future" re: sepsis.also, if the infection was confined to the rotten teeth pockets - and not within flesh, then it sounds like they gave her treatment ? - "packed with antibacterial" (as opposed to tablet to treat the body) and have arranged an appointment.teeth shouldn't "crack" unless they are weak already (imE - bloody popcorn kernels), also A&E has been open for the duration ?.what else can they do ? - you can request painkillers (or antibiotics if needed) from g.p. or dentist ?


Molars growing out of bone, move in a very powerful but slow motion. It’s almost like a very slow hydraulic pressure build up. The newer stronger wisdom tooth, could quite easily over power an already used tooth.

I had a wisdom tooth removed at the hospital, due to the wisdom tooth coming in at an angle pointed to the front. Thankfully it was diagnosed early with time to spare. Regular checkups are recommended for a reason. If people actually looked at preventative measures, there would be less emergencies.
NHS direct, they will arrange an emergency dentist, do not go to A&E because they will be hesitant, and it is not the quickest way to solve the issue.

In Wales, wisdom teeth extractions are done in the hospital on referral appointments, can take months!
Your GP maybe able to help, I had to have my lower wisdom out due to the fact that it was growing into my lower trigeminal nerve.
In cardiff the dental hospital had a first come first served emergency service, You turned up, registered with reception and they would take some many cases per morning or afternoon. If they couldn't fit you in, you came back the next day but a lot earlier. I used it a few times as no family dentist could treat me due to a hereditary condition I had. They would patch me up in the emergency service then I'd get an appt for the specialist dept that needed to deal with me.
I'm a dental nurse and can assure you it's not the dentist is out of order or you have a righteous receptionist as someone commented, a 1 hour long appointment is a chunk of a session that is not always readily available especially if the practice is normally booked far in advance. Any extraction can or cannot be complex hence why a lengthy time was requested,every tooth and patient is different. Packing the tooth was to reduce inflamation and infection otherwise attempting to anaesthetise the area may not be successful. If your family member is in pain they should contact the practice saying they cannot wait till their appointment date and ask what advice the dentist can offer,they may have a cancellation list they can be put on but would need to be willing to accept an appointment perhaps at short notice and not always a time of day that suits. Emergency services may only prescribe antibiotics or painkillers and suggest they contact their dentist anyway. Hope this helps
Oneday773 h, 15 m ago

Molars growing out of bone, move in a very powerful but slow motion. It’s a …Molars growing out of bone, move in a very powerful but slow motion. It’s almost like a very slow hydraulic pressure build up. The newer stronger wisdom tooth, could quite easily over power an already used tooth. I had a wisdom tooth removed at the hospital, due to the wisdom tooth coming in at an angle pointed to the front. Thankfully it was diagnosed early with time to spare. Regular checkups are recommended for a reason. If people actually looked at preventative measures, there would be less emergencies.


I have a wisdom tooth coming through and when i asked the dentist where it will go (as there is no space) he replied only God knows. So i asked if it could be removed he said he is not allowed to remove any tooth that hasn't perforated through the gum. He said it would have to be done by a specialist at the hospital. So i said ok. He said but I need to go to him complaining at least 3 times of pain before he is allowed to refer me. Surely by then it will be too late and the damage will be done?. My used to be straight teeth have started crowding together which is very annoying as i was made to wear braces when i was younger.
Dentist said after ten days. That is for the infection to clear up. They can't do it while the infection is there. I think the dentist is saying they need ten days for the antibiotics to clear the infection and after that point they will be able to remove the tooth. They aren't saying you have to come back on day eleven to have it taken out, they are saying you can come back before day eleven to have it taken out. My sister is a dentist. If you want me to drop her a text about the ins and outs, whys and wherefores let me know.
Edited by: "psychobitchfromhell" 9th Aug
psychobitchfromhell1 h, 16 m ago

Dentist said after ten days. That is for the infection to clear up. They …Dentist said after ten days. That is for the infection to clear up. They can't do it while the infection is there. I think the dentist is saying they need ten days for the antibiotics to clear the infection and after that point they will be able to remove the tooth. They aren't saying you have to come back on day eleven to have it taken out, they are saying you can come back before day eleven to have it taken out. My sister is a dentist. If you want me to drop her a text about the ins and outs, whys and wherefores let me know.



The 10 days wait isn't the problem, the frustration for the OP is they've been told they can't get an appointment until September 4th - considerably longer than 10 days, especially for someone that is in pain and who will be left wondering if any infection has cleared up.
bo0td2 h, 36 m ago

The 10 days wait isn't the problem, the frustration for the OP is they've …The 10 days wait isn't the problem, the frustration for the OP is they've been told they can't get an appointment until September 4th - considerably longer than 10 days, especially for someone that is in pain and who will be left wondering if any infection has cleared up.


I'm sure that's frustrating but unfortunately there just aren't enough nhs dentists to go around. I'm not sure if is grounds for a complaint though. If they are full, they are full. Your relative could probably get it done a lot sooner if they were prepared to go private although goodness knows what that might cost. The dentist is dealing with the infection anf I'm sure will issue a repeat prescription for antibiotics if required. In a lot of branches of the health service, having initial treatment and an appointment for final resolution within a month would be considered a result.
psychobitchfromhell13 m ago

I'm not sure if is grounds for a complaint though.



I agree with you. The focus should be on the patient. No-one should suffer for the best part of a month. The NHS advice in these circumstances is clear, and severe pain is one of the reasons listed on their website for going to the hospital with a dental issue. It also says to call 111 if in any doubt for further advice.
Edited by: "bo0td" 9th Aug
I had an emergency appointment. I was in severe pain and waited 3 days. I was told I had to go and wait until there was a moment I could be seen. Luckily I got seen immediately.

I had already gone private to another dentist in the meantime and she did a temporary filling and put medication inside the tooth. I was also given a prescription for amoxicillin. Cost £80 in total.

The emergency dentist just told me to wait until the infection had gone then I went back and had the tooth pulled out on the NHS.
Edited by: "hearts22" 9th Aug
kester7613 h, 27 m ago

https://www.oralhealthgroup.com/features/inferior-alveolar-nerve-damage-during-removal-of-mandibular-third-molars/Link above as to why dentist don't like messing with lower wisdom teeth.


Agree, my dentist removed my upper wisdom teeth in normal clinic and took 90 mins as they were a tad stubborn. The lowers he wouldnt touch as too close to a vital facial nerve, so went to hospital and had them removed.

Both times under local anaesthetic and tbh not that bad and recovery was pretty quick.
Op tell your relative to go private to get a referral to the dental hospital asap.
bo0td3 h, 4 m ago

I agree with you. The focus should be on the patient. No-one should suffer …I agree with you. The focus should be on the patient. No-one should suffer for the best part of a month. The NHS advice in these circumstances is clear, and severe pain is one of the reasons listed on their website for going to the hospital with a dental issue. It also says to call 111 if in any doubt for further advice.


If you go to the hospital though, all they are going to deal with is the pain. It's unlikely they have a dentist on call. They would deal with the initial infection and refer you back to your dentist to resolve the issue. If you live near a dental hospital, you may be able to have the problem dealt with earlier. I imagine the pain is largely being caused by the infection which sounds quite nasty rather than the tooth. Again, dentists can prescribe pain killers.
sazal17 h, 12 m ago

I have a wisdom tooth coming through and when i asked the dentist where it …I have a wisdom tooth coming through and when i asked the dentist where it will go (as there is no space) he replied only God knows.



the person is scaremongering: teeth will shift to accomadate - like when you have a tooth removed and the surrounding ones shift a little / don't worry - like i say healthy teeth don't crack / get damaged like that etc (why he can't predict).

you can tell they are talking nonsense impact causes "cracks" (slow growth (not "pneumatic pressure"...) - means they will most likely be pushed away from the neighbouring tooth (like how ivy grows on walls, not through them....).

much better a healthy mouth then cosmetic teeth, regardless.
Edited by: "Ban_Anas" 9th Aug
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