Private Vs. NHS dentist - Which is better? | Smile Stories
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Private Vs. NHS dentist – Which is better?

Choosing between a private and NHS dentist might seem like a puzzling journey. Both options offer pros and cons, and choosing the right one can often come down to your budget, dental work needs, and personal preferences.  At Smile Stories, we’re here to guide you through the differences between NHS dentists and private dentists to help you make the best decision for you.

Private vs. NHS dentist: A dental dilemma

What are private dentists? 

Private dentistry often gets the spotlight for their personalised services and an array of treatment options that are not available on the NHS. Private dentists tend to offer a broader range of cosmetic treatments, from porcelain veneers to high-tech teeth whitening; a co-planned and custom-built smile makeover is what they’re known for.

What’s the difference between NHS and private dentist?

It’s difficult to compare the two; on the one hand NHS dentists offer essential treatments like check-ups, fillings, and extractions. Whereas private dentists roll out the red carpet with a broader range of treatments, including cosmetic dentistry as well as your routine dentistry

Here is a breakdown of the main differences:

AspectPrivate DentistryNHS Dentistry
Range of ServicesOffers a broad range, including cosmetic, specialised and routine treatments.Focuses on essential treatments; cosmetic options may be limited.
Appointment AvailabilityTypically offers more flexible scheduling and shorter waiting times.May have longer waiting times for appointments.
PersonalisationProvides a more personalised experience with additional services.Pretty standardised guidelines and services.
Treatment CostCan be higher, but reflects the additional services and personalised care.Affordable pricing due to standardised NHS rates.
AccessibilityAccessible to those willing to pay for a more comprehensive experience. Ensures affordability, making dental care accessible to a wider audience.

Are NHS dentists cheaper than private?

NHS dentistry definitely takes the crown when it comes to affordability, with cheap treatments that are broadly accessible. That being said, private dentists charge higher fees because treatments are often more advanced, materials are of higher quality, treatment is unrushed and the quality of service tends to be much higher too. 

There’s a huge difference between paying for a metal mercury filling placed in 15 mins and a tooth rebuilt with highly polished composite over the space of over an hour and a half.

Are private dentists better than NHS?

It’s not always about ‘better’ but more about what works for you. While fees apply when it comes to private dentists, they tend to have more time to dedicate to each patient, providing a bespoke and personalised experience, whereas NHS dentists aim to be more accessible and affordable for many. The choice between them is a matter of priorities, but ultimately both strive to ensure optimal oral health for patients.

Why are NHS dentists going private?

There may be many reasons why some NHS dentists are going private, some dentists choose to go private for greater flexibility in treatments and to escape the red tape. Going private allows them to offer a wider range of services with more control to provide patients with the best care possible, not the best care possible on a budget with huge restrictions in place.

Can a private dentist refer to NHS?

Absolutely! If your private dentist identifies a dental problem that falls under the NHS umbrella, they can definitely refer you to an NHS dentist for specific treatments. Private and NHS dentists are great at working as a team for your teeth – getting an initial consultation with a private dentist can help you map out you smile story, whilst an NHS dentist can swoop in when needed.

Do private dentists take NHS patients?

Many private dentists do take on NHS patients. This allows individuals to benefit from the broader range of services and personalised care offered by private practices while still accessing essential NHS treatments. It’s essential to inquire with your chosen private dentist about their policies and arrangements for NHS patients to ensure a smooth experience.

Choosing between a private and NHS dentist ultimately comes down to your personal situation and what you value most when it comes to your dental care. At Smile Stories, our goal is to ensure your smile shines, whether you prefer the glitz and glam of private dentistry or not.

So, which is better? It’s not about better; it’s about what suits your dental needs. At Smile Stories, we believe that every smile is a story, and we’re here to help you write yours with joy and dental health at front of mind.

Book your free video consultation with us today.