What is classed as 'emergency dental work'?

Hi.

Is it basically anything that causes you pain? Be it minor or major?

Thanks.
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Comments

  • It depends who is classifying dental emergency 

    if it is a health service definition it is
    swelling that compromises the airway
    bleeding after an extraction that won't stop
    trauma
    pain, no matter how severe , is not classified as a health service emergency . 

    Individual surgeries will then prioritise ,alongside the above ,pain in order of severity. In covid times dentistry dental surgeries can only see around 20% of their normal patients because of the precautions that need to be taken, particularly for procedures that involve drilling or creation of aerosols. 


  • It depends who is classifying dental emergency 

    if it is a health service definition it is
    swelling that compromises the airway
    bleeding after an extraction that won't stop
    trauma
    pain, no matter how severe , is not classified as a health service emergency . 

    Individual surgeries will then prioritise ,alongside the above ,pain in order of severity. In covid times dentistry dental surgeries can only see around 20% of their normal patients because of the precautions that need to be taken, particularly for procedures that involve drilling or creation of aerosols. 


    Thanks. So what about a crown on the front tooth that needs replacing? The stump underneath is causing some pain  because over time the crown has shifted about 4mm. Now there's a gap to contend with too.
  • In the present covid emergency it is very unlikely any NHS dentist and quite a few private dentists are unlikely to be able to replace a crown. 
    A many laboratories are not open
    B it needs a long appointment to prepare a crown and there is a legal limit on how long the dentist and nurse are allowed to wear their PPE which makes it difficult to prepare a crown
    C from your description it is difficult to see how this would qualify as an emergency and catapult you over the considerable waiting lists most dentists have of people with eg abscesses , infections and severe toothache as well as outstanding treatment. 
  • A legal limit?  Which law is that?
  • Yes there is a limit on wearing fp3 masks for no more than an hour before you should have a break. Particularly important when a dentist is doing microsurgery requiring high degrees of hand eye co ordination and concentration. See page 18 hse guidance on PPE https://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/priced/hsg53.pdf dentists have to follow this guidance. 
  • onwards&upwards
    onwards&upwards Posts: 3,423 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    edited 2 September 2020 at 7:49AM
    So no law that tells dentists how long to wear their PPE then.  Thanks, good to be clear on these things. 

    Of course, it is possible doff then re-don in order to continue caring for patients.  This happens in hospitals a lot. 

  • Besides which my own personal experience is there are many restrictions to doing complex microsurgery in PPE , visualising and accessing the mouth is physical and mentally difficult at the best of times , wearing PPE for aerosol procedures plus loupes etc is extremely physically and mentally tiring , by the end of an hour session you are at your absolute physical and mental limits . You then have to decontaminate and go straight into seeing another patient and this , for most dentists , for ten hour days to try to catch up with outstanding treatment, day in, day out. 



    Gosh I wonder how those staff on ICUs and respiratory wards have coped for the last 6 months!!  I suppose at least they didn't also have to cope with looking after multiple patients at once, managing the ventilators and all the other devices, their patients dying on a regular basis, communicating with family members and loved ones unable to visit even in the final hours and so on.

    Oh wait... 

    Honestly, dentists can cry me a river.  They really need to start stepping up somehow and actually providing an acceptable level of care again, they are healthcare professionals providing an absolutely vital and occasionally lifesaving service.  
  • I'm not sure , given the regulations that dentists have to work under , what more they can do to step up. If a surgery has to be left fallow for an hour after each aerosol procedure before it can even be cleaned , waiting rooms cannot be used, only one patient going through the practice at a time , the rigamarole over covid checks when someone enters the practice etc then obviously capacity is only going to be a fraction of what it was. If capacity is 20% of what it was then obviously some people will have to wait for treatment . 

    That's without the problems of trying to source PPE . We have a new NHS trainee dentist started this month. The health board have fit tested him for a mask , we are not allowed to. The only problem is the health board cannot supply the mask and the trainee can only wear that mask, neither can we source that mask privately as stocks are reserved for the NHS to buy. So until the health board supplies , that dentist cannot do any aerosol procedures at all. 

    Short of the government stepping in ,and building tens of thousands of new surgeries with negative pressure ventilation , whilst dentists are obliged , by law, to follow fallow times there will continue to be a disparity between dental need and capacity, which was already bad pre covid and now is at crisis point. 
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