Dental Choices is a website designed to make it easier for you to find and register with an NHS dentist.
Dental Choices aims to provide reliable information about dentistry to help you make informed decisions about your oral health and oral health care.
Search now to find an NHS dentist near you accepting new patients in England.
A system to find an NHS dentist, made by an NHS dentist
I made Dental Choices in 2018, while working as an NHS emergency dentist. I used to routinely explain to unregistered patients I saw each day, the complicated process of how to use the NHS website to find a dentist they could register with. After explaining thousands of times, and each time agreeing that yes it is unnecessarily complicated, I started to think that I could make a better and simpler system.
I designed a system to check the NHS website each day and automatically update a list of local dental practices accepting new NHS patients, thinking I could then just print the list to give to unregistered patients. Once developed however, the system could easily be used to generate a list for any location in England, even making a custom list for each patient …and so Dental Choices was born.
How is Dental Choices different to the NHS website?
The NHS website provides a directory of information on all NHS dental practices in England on the Isle of Wight. You can search to get a list of the closest practices to you, but you cannot filter the list to show only practices accepting new patients. If you are trying to register with an NHS dentist, most of the information on the NHS website is redundant to you because most of the practices are not accepting new patients.
Dental Choices gives the same information more meaning by filtering the list and showing you only those practices that have indicated that they are accepting new patients, and by letting you know how recently the practice made that indication. The practices’ full NHS profiles can then be accessed via a link to the NHS website. In this way Dental Choices aims to enrich rather than duplicate the information held on the NHS website.
Dental articles written by an NHS dentist
With the advent of remote dentistry during the COVID-19 lockdowns (and making use of some of the free time during the first lockdown), I added new articles to Dental Choices to aid communication from dental teams to patients. With UK dentistry limited by extra precautions being taken due to COVID-19, these articles acted as a guide to help patients know when it might be appropriate to seek help, what help to seek, and how some conditions might be managed at home.
Updates and user feedback
Each article has a feedback form and comments are regularly reviewed and used to adapt and clarify the information in the articles.
While I strive for the content on Dental Choices to be as accurate and useful as possible, it is the nature of science and healthcare to adapt and evolve with new research, new evidence and current practice. Information contained on this website should therefore not be used as an alternative to professional advice from a dentist, doctor or other healthcare professional.
Dental Choices is currently provided as an act of philanthropy, set up and run by an NHS dentist in his free time. Amazon Affiliate links are used to generate some income when recommending products to buy, but the income does not cover the cost of running the website and certainly not the time to develop and maintain it. Dental Choices makes no profit, has no hidden agenda, no secret sponsors, and no external influences on content beyond user feedback.
Why is Dental Choices not a charity?
The cost and time it would take to set up Dental Choices as a charity has so far put me off doing so, but if it generates more income in the future, it is something I may consider.
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