A visit to the dentist can be a difficult experience for many of us and the vast majority of dental procedures are successfully carried out by qualified and professional dental practitioners either privately or under the NHS. However, if something does go wrong, our specialist dental negligence solicitors can help you receive the compensation you require for either corrective treatment or to reimburse you for earnings lost for time you’ve had to take off work.
One in seven people in the UK suffer from ‘dentist anxiety’ and many more struggle to organise appointments between work and home life. It is, however, a service we all need, with 39.8 million courses of treatment delivered across the country last year. Whether you need to visit a dentist for a routine check-up or a more complicated procedure, you should always expect to receive the highest level of care.
What is dental negligence?
Every case has its own unique circumstances that need to be taken into consideration, though broadly speaking, dental negligence can be grouped into the following three categories:
If your dentist takes too long to diagnose a problem with your oral health, to the point where further complications occur that could have been avoidable, this is a delayed diagnosis. Examples of this may include your dentist failing to:
- Treat decay or act upon signs of gum disease.
- Diagnose serious dental conditions like abscesses.
A false diagnosis or misdiagnosis occurs when a dental problem is misjudged, leading to worsening symptoms and unnecessary treatment. This could include:
- removal of a healthy tooth due to error or misdiagnosis
- Incorrect drugs administered due to misdiagnosis
Substandard dental work
A dentist’s work is deemed substandard, or inadequate, when they fail to carry out treatment to a reasonable standard. Examples of substandard work include:
- Inadequate fillings, crowns, or root canal treatment
- Incorrect fitting of implants
- Failed implants
- Poor standards of hygiene e.g. Not using clean and sterile equipment
- Improper use of anaesthesia
- Nerve damage or failure to offer suitable alternative treatment such as root canal treatment prior to extraction
We represent an increasing number of clients who have suffered from poor dental treatment, and patients fail to realise that it is a loosely regulated industry, leaving many not only at risk of receiving sub-standard treatment, but also potentially facing large bills for remedial work, should their treatment go wrong.
Our clients have suffered from dentists simply failing to identify and treat gum disease (often despite patients having many regular check-ups) to poorly fitting crowns and painful abscesses caused by errors in treatment.
The consequences can be severe. One dentist took out seven teeth without the patient’s consent, whilst another patient had to have 10 teeth removed and dentures fitted simply because of their dentist’s failure to treat gum disease.
We continually campaign for greater regulation over dentistry, and work hard to make sure the victims of sub-standard care are properly represented, and fully compensated for their pain and loss.
Simply call us on
01482 778 463 for free advice
Most recent cases
- I was livid when told my dentist was a fraud, Hudgells Solicitors fight for tougher sentencing
- Patient awarded £47,000 damages after four decades of neglect by dentist left them facing loss of eight teeth
- £5,500 settlement for dental patient who had own compensation claim rejected
- Compensation for patients left with tooth decay and gum disease by same dentist
- Hudgell Solicitors secures £20,000 compensation for dental patient left in agony by treatment
- £10,000 compensation for bride after dentist ruined her teeth months before wedding
What can I claim for?
We understand the difficulties that can accompany dental negligence. You may be in great pain or discomfort or be forced to pay out thousands of pounds on additional work to rectify mistakes. Some of the things you may be able to claim compensation for are:
- General damages: For any pain and suffering you have experienced
- Expenses: Any expenses you’ve incurred as part of your claim. This may include further treatment, transport or prescriptions
- Loss of earnings: Due to time off work
- Remedial costs: For any treatment to repair the damage done by negligent dental work
What does the Law say?
General Dental Council guidance says all dental practitioners in the UK should be insured against instances of negligence – but there is no law to enforce it.
However, due to the lack of firm law, it is thought that there are many dentists practicing in the UK who are not insured, placing a large responsibility on patients to do their research.
There are plans to bring in legislation which will make insurance a legal requirement, but it is not clear when this is set to come into effect.
Thankfully, most cases are resolved out of court with a settlement, and your solicitor will ensure all settlement offers are given the correct consideration.
How can Hudgell Solicitors help?
Simon Wilson, our head of medical negligence, has over 16 years of experience in dealing with medical compensation claims and dental negligence claims. Led by Simon, our expert team will:
- Obtain independent dental evidence: Qualified experts will review the evidence of your claim in order to advise upon the treatment provided and whether it amounts to negligent treatment.
- Collect information on your financial losses: Whether this is the cost of multiple treatments, travel costs, loss of earnings or anything else that has left you out of pocket.
- Support you throughout the process: We know this process can be complicated so we’re always available for your questions and queries
Our team will ensure that your case is investigated thoroughly, and will take the worry and hassle out of making a dental compensation claim.
All claims have a time limit, so get in touch today and we’ll guide you every step of the way.
- Error making dentists must repair the damage – and fully compensate patients for suffering and loss
- Dental Negligence: What you need to know
- The General Dental Council set and enforce standards of dental, practice and conduct, protect the public from illegal practice.
- NHS guide to complaining about NHS dental treatment
- Citizens Advice Bureau guide to NHS dental complaints
Simply call us on
01482 778 463 for free advice
No win no fee
- personal insurance cover so there’s no financial risk to you in pursuing a claim for dental negligence
- Whatever the outcome of your case, you won’t have to pay a penny (provided that you fully assist us with your claim) other than an agreed percentage of your damages