Patients share their stories of dentist place shortages

Dentist examining a patient's teeth. Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Dentist examining a patient's teeth. Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

As mydentist in East Harling prepares to close down, people continue to suffer a shortage of places at dentists. Here are some experiences of Diss residents.

Sarah Holloway said: 'We moved to Diss in August and I broke a front tooth not long after. I tried ringing round the local dentists to see if I could get an NHS appointment and was told they were full and they couldn't help me.

'I was told to go to NHS website and that would find me the nearest surgery that could take me.

'Cambridgeshire or London were the only options that came up so I travelled two hours back to where we used to live and got seen by my lovely old dentist instead. This is not always practical though. I was really quite bemused that there were no NHS patients being taken on till April!'

Chelsea Sprattling said: 'When I moved to Diss two and a half years ago, the only dentist I could find that were accepting NHS and had an appointment available within that month was in East Harling.

'Even then after a couple of appointments for an extraction etc, the main dentist had resigned and so my six monthly checkup at the practice was cancelled twice!

'So up until I moved to Bungay I hadn't been able to see a dentist for around one and a half years.'

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Sophie Scott said: 'I have tried to register my children with a dentist locally twice. Both times the dentist has cancelled the appointment on us and we've gone to the back of the queue.

'It's a ridiculous situation. I am now looking at dentists 20 miles away to see if we can get in there.'

Juliane Gregg said: 'I moved to the area at the end of last year and needed to register - the nearest dentist that was taking on NHS patients after calling round a lot having looked at the NHS site first was in Stowmarket.

'It's a good job I drive so I feel for anyone that doesn't and needs a dentist round here!'

Jody Todd said: 'I woke up with an abscess on Monday afternoon. After calling nine dentists within the area not one would see me or take me on as an NHS patient. I went to walk in centre in Norwich to be turned away.

'I called 111 who gave me two dentist in Norwich to try again no help. Luckily I have now registered with Harleston. 'No dentist in an area local to where you live will take you unless it's private.'