London is probably the best served city in the UK for emergency dental services. Each borough and area has many dental surgeries and you can also access emergency dental care, dental hospitals, dental clinics, and dental access centres in the capital.
Do you need an emergency dentist in London?
A London based emergency dentist will have the same rules about treating dental emergencies as most dental practices. You will only be regarded as a true emergency in the following circumstances:
If you have been injured in an accident or have a sports injury and you have knocked one of your teeth out completely. You need to retrieve the tooth, put it in milk, and get to an emergency dentist within about half an hour to have the tooth put back into place.
If you develop an abscess that is causing your face to swell. If the swelling is heading up towards your eye, or affecting your throat, this needs to be dealt with immediately. The usual treatment is an emergency root canal procedure and antibiotics.
If you experience uncontrolled bleeding from your gum shortly after having dental treatment. You can use cotton wool or clean cotton material held in place for 20 minutes to stop the bleeding, but if it will not stop you need emergency dental treatment.
If you live in London and you are registered with a London-based NHS dentist the first step is to call your own dental practice. If your dental emergency occurs during normal working hours you will be able to obtain advice over the phone, and if you need to go there urgently, you will probably be able to see a dentist the same day.
For emergencies that occur when your own dental clinic is closed, it is still worthwhile phoning your own clinic as most dental clinics provide details of emergency dental services on their answering machine message.
Finding an emergency dentist in London: phone options
If you are visiting London, are a resident in the UK, need emergency dental treatment, and you do not have access to the internet, you have several options to make contact with an emergency dentist in London by phone:
The NHS Direct Helpline (0845 4647) will be able to give you details of London based emergency dentists who are located near to your location. The NHS helpline is open all hours of the day and night, and can also give you advice by phone on what to do until you can reach an emergency dentist, or how you can help to manage your own problem until you can see your own NHS dentist.
Search the local phone directory to identify dental surgeries and centres nearby that offer emergency dental treatment.
Finding an emergency dentist in London: online searching
In addition to the general search strategies for finding an emergency dentist UK-wide you can also try searching using Google or another search engine using the following search terms:
Emergency dentist London
Emergency dentist London followed by the name of the borough or area of London where you are. For example, if you use emergency dentist London Hammersmith, you will find more relevant information for Hammersmith.
If you want to identify predominantly NHS dentists who provide emergency dental care in London, use emergency NHS dentist London, followed by the name of your local area if you wish.
Note that many dental surgeries that offer private dental treatment will treat emergencies, but will charge much more than the NHS. Find out whether they take NHS patients when you call, or try to obtain information on the likely costs; some have a maximum dental charge for treating emergencies.
Finding an emergency dentist in London: useful websites
You can also try these websites as a starting point. All were available when this guide was written and are current as of June 9 2011:
www.24hour-emergencydentist.co.uk is an emergency dental treatment service with emergency dental clinics near to four tube stops: Baker Street, Liverpool Street, Hammersmith, and Earls Court. They have an emergency hotline number and provide information in languages other than English. You can request an emergency dentist who is fluent in the main European languages French, Spanish, German, Italian, and Portuguese as well as in Polish, Chinese Mandarin, Japanese, Russian, Hebrew, and Arabic.
www.emergencynhsdentist.com provides NHS emergency dental treatment in Fulham and advertises their prices clearly on the site. NHS and private dental patients are treated.
www.bartsandthelondon.nhs.uk provides a walk in service during the day where you can wait to see an emergency dentist without making an appointment. Located centrally at Barts and The London Dental Hospital in Whitechapel. The website gives detailed information on how to access out-of-hours emergency dentists London.
www.londondentist.co.uk is a directory site that lists dentists who work within London and who offer emergency dental care.
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