Going private doesn’t just save you from the lengthy NHS dentist waiting list, it can offer a lot more benefits. See what private dental care can do for you.
Confident smiles start with quality dental check-ups. But if you’ve moved home, or years have passed since your last dental check-up, it can be daunting to register with a new dentist. There are a lot of questions we get asked about examinations: how much is a dental check-up? How long does it take? And how many appointments are available? The answers can help you make a confident, informed choice about whether you wish to go through the NHS for a dental check, or opt for private dental care.
Here, we outline the factors to consider when booking a dental check-up, how often dental check-ups should be booked in, why you may wish to consider going private, and how it may not be as expensive as you think.
Price shouldn’t be a deterrent to your dental health - but exactly how much is a dental check-up? While it’s true that NHS check-ups are free, there are limits to availability, services, and specialisms, which we’ll discuss below. Private dental check-ups can be more expensive, but at Fresh Smile Clinic we make sure it’s affordable. Starting at £15, our members receive a 20-minute examination every year (including digital and CBCT scans), two 30-minute hygiene sessions, and a 10% discount on all other routine treatments.
Dental check-ups help identify any potential problems earlier, making them easier to treat, or if possible, prevent altogether. The current NHS dentist waiting list time for non-urgent treatments is 18 weeks from the day an appointment is booked. However, in 2022 it took around 26 months to get an appointment in some parts of the country. Private dental practices often offer more flexible scheduling options, making it less stressful to arrange appointments around busy schedules, since you don’t need to book months in advance. Once your check-up is complete, your dentist will suggest the best time to return for another appointment.
The average NHS dental check-up lasts around 10-15 minutes. This can take longer if there’s an issue that requires treatment. Private dental check-ups may spend more time investigating. For example, our examinations include digital and CBCT scans, which are quick and painless, but our more thorough approach takes between 20-30 minutes.
During a dental check-up, your dentist will check every aspect of your oral health in relation to your general health, including your teeth, mouth, and gums. They’ll look for signs of tooth decay, the health of your tooth structure, worn restorations, and any early signs of gum disease or oral cancer. As well as our thorough checks, all our patients are required to undergo a complete 360 investigation of their current dental health, an intraoral 3D scan, X-rays, personal smile goals, discussions of any concerns (or those identified), and bespoke dental treatment planning when they register.
On the NHS, you can have treatments and services considered clinically necessary for your oral health, including check-ups, emergency appointments, X-rays, extractions, and restorative treatments such as fillings, dentures, and crowns. Cosmetic treatments, such as teeth whitening and composite bonding aren’t typically carried out on the NHS.
While private dental care is generally more expensive than NHS care, you can access a wider range of services and specialisms. Private dental practices may have a range of specialist dentists in various fields, as well as access to advanced technologies and materials. As a private member with Fresh Smile Clinic, you’re able to access a wider suite of services following your check-up, including teeth whitening, veneers, and composite bonding. You can also access more complex services, such as dental implants and a range of affordable orthodontic systems such as Invisalign.
Whether it’s fear of dental procedures or a phobia of going to the dentist stemming from previous experiences, dental anxiety is a common reason people avoid dental check-ups. We understand this - and want you to feel comfortable and relaxed when you visit us for a dental check-up or treatment. Our multi-award-winning clinic is the only one in West Yorkshire to be Dental Phobia Certified, combining modern dentistry with friendly customer service for a relaxed and professional atmosphere. Our practice is calming and contemporary, far removed from that of a typical dentist waiting area - and we offer fresh ground coffee or a latte to sip while you wait.
With over 25 years’ experience in dental check-ups and treatments, including cosmetic and restorative treatments, we’re here to help you love your smile. Book in for a dental check-up today and we’ll contact you to arrange a time and date for your consultation.
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