How do I register at the practice?
To be registered at DCO Dental Group you have to be seen for a new patient examination and assessment appointment.
Completing a medical history questionnaire sheet does not constitute registration. They are provided prior to your first appointment to make your this visit easier.
To stay registered at the practice it is necessary to keep up with the recalls that have been set by your dentist.
What do I need for my first visit?
A fully completed medical history questionnaire, with all the medication you are taking listed. Please make sure to complete the contact details section including email and GP section. Medical histories can be downloaded from the 'downloadable documents' section. Also bring any proof of benefits that you receive.
What happens if I arrive late?
We will always try to see you if possible. It depends on how late you arrive and the nature of your appointment. For complex treatment, which is very often time consuming (e.g. root fillings), it is likely that you will have to be rescheduled. If you anticipate being late please phone us and let us know as we may be able to offer an alternative appointment on the same day that will be more convenient.
Will I be seen on time?
We endeavour to remain punctual for our appointment times by ensuring a full compliment of staff and maintaining all the surgery equipment to the highest standards. Our staff will inform you if we are going to be over 20 minutes late.
We regularly audit our appointment times, looking for ways to reduce delays, but inevitably we occasionally run late. This may be due to complex procedures taking longer than anticipated or sometimes other patients being late. If five patients are 10 minutes late within a session then the dentist will run 50 minutes late, please bear this in mind.
Why must I sign a medical history questionnaire every time I visit?
It is good practice and a professional requirement that we check your medical history each time you attend. This means that the dentists can tailor treatment depending on medication or medical conditions specific to each patient. These can both change between appointments and it can be easy to forget to tell your dentist of these changes. It is practice policy to complete a new medical history questionnaire each year. We have to be able to prove that we have done this that is why we ask you to sign it.
Medical history questionnaires are also useful for keeping your contact details up to date.
What happens if I miss or cancel an appointment with short notice?
NHS guidelines prevent us from charging for missed appointments. Therefore if you miss two appointments or cancel without 24 hours notice in a year you will be de-registered.
How long do I have to wait to be seen?
An initial assessment can usual be scheduled within a week. For treatment we aim for no longer than a 2 week wait. However, certain times of the day such as the start and end of the clinics are busier and the wait will be longer, Please be mindful of school holidays as these periods tend to get booked up more in advance.
We aim to see emergency patients the same day if possible.
How often should I have a dental checkup?
Your dentist will determine your recall period. This can be can be anything between 3 months and 2 years. The interval is dependent upon numerous factors including your dental history, dental decay rate, medical history and social history as well as tobacco and alcohol consumption. We follow current NICE guidelines regarding recall intervals.
Why do I have to fill in a blue form?
This is a legal requirement for every NHS course of treatment.
Can I book a scale and polish?
On the NHS, a scale and polish is available upon the request/referral of your dentist. This is a clinical treatment that will remove any plaque or tartar build up around your teeth and gums to keep them as healthy as possible.
If you would like a Scale & Polish for more cosmetic reasons, e.g. stain removal, then you can book in directly with our Therapists on a Private Basis. The charge for this is £30.
For a more advanced stain removal procedure, please look at our HydroPolish treatment in our Aesthetics page.
Will I have treatment on my first visit?
Generally not. The first appointment is to assess your mouth and determine if any treatment is required. During this appointment we will chart the condition of your teeth. A treatment plan will be formulated and options discussed with you, giving you all the options open to you.
Can I join the practice if I live outside the area?
Does your practice perform implants?
Our practice is able to provide an implant service by a specialist dentist. Please refer to the implant section for more information.
Are implants available on the NHS?
Only in extreme circumstances and based on individual circumstances. For further information please discuss this matter with your dentist.
What do I do if I have any suggestions or complaints?
We welcome patient comments. We strive to provide optimal care and are always looking for ways in which to improve our practice. Please send your suggestions or complaints to Bernadette Wilkinson, DCO practice manager.
Do you provide a service for root fillings?
Yes, however we are unable to replace existing root fillings. These cases are referred to a specialist.
How long does it take to construct a denture?
In general, construction of a denture requires four appointments divided over the course of a month. The process involves taking moulds of the mouth, measurement of the jaw, ascertaining the correct tooth tone, and preparation of the denture.
What is the waiting time to see an NHS specialist?
Waiting time is on average 6-8 weeks following a referral to an NHS specialist, although this is subject to variation beyond our control. We endeavor to refer you to a specialist in your locality.
Do you provide a tooth whitening service?
Yes, this service is available at DCO Dental Group. Tooth whitening is however not an NHS service. For more information please consult your dentist.
Can you straighten teeth?
We can straighten most cases using the Clearstep system. Please speak to your dentist for details.
When do I pay for treatment?
For band 1 and 2 NHS treatment we take payment before the treatment. For band 3 we will take a £100 deposit followed by the reminder at the start of the last appointment.
Do I have to pay for an emergency appointment?
Generally you will have to pay band 1, which is £22.70 for an emergency appointment.
Where do I call if I need dental treatment and the practice is closed?
Our practices open at 8 am and do a number of late evenings. Should you need emergency treatment outside of our opening hours then you can contact NHS direct on 0161 3372246 or NHS 111
Is there finance available for more costly treatments expensive items of treatment such as implants?
Yes, for treatments costing over £500, a competitive repayment scheme is available. Please ask your dentist for more information.