Honestly, l am not usually this dim, but how much did you say?
So, today at 2pm, l attended my dentist appointment – went through the protocols of waiting outside, entering the surgery, having my temperature taken, then because l was classed as an NHS new patient [which for the record is quite important as you will see why later] – l had to undergo the whole proceedure of form filling [albeit thankfully those were filled in online before my appointment] and then led down stairs to see the dentist, who was different to the dentist as l saw as a Private new patient last year.
Sat in the dentist chair and explained my situation to the new dentist who then started probing and prodding as they do my teeth and asking questions and undergoing the freezing process as they must perform per tooth and then having several x-rays performed …… and then sat there and listened to the results.
The savvy amongst you may well have spotted a couple of differences … notably this – in 2020 the only way l could see an actual dentist was to go privately at the surgery. That way l was able to not have to wait nearly a year before l could see a dentist for an NHS appointment ………. and last year on the 10th March l was assured the following things as a private patient … that l had two plans available to me …..Plan A – full implants at a cost of £20,000 or Plan B a full denture at the cost of around £7,000 but that 45% of my teeth could be saved. My appointment cost at that time was £59.80 for thirty minutes. The overall recovery dental plan was expensive back then, but l thought okay, but at least it will be done and l had to look at it as a solid investment for my mental and physical well being!!
The second difference is that today l was able to see the dentist as an NHS patient despite being told last year that once l went private l would have to remain private as l would not be able to have NHS treatment from that dental surgery. Yet today l was breing treated as a new NHS patient to the surgery. Somehow l had been turned into an NHS patient as opposed to a private patient?
Today however they were brutally honest and said that due to the extensive damage and wear/tear on my teeth since my first appointment with them last year they would NOT be able to save 45% but maybe only 5% but that my jaw bone was solid and would support a new full denture. Basically a full new set of false teeth.
I was dreading the cost implication and expected to hear a figure of several thousand pounds for a full recovery dental plan. However when l heard the figure, l was speechless, l didn’t know what to say, l was stuttering and mumbling behind my mask and l just wanted to cry at that point, l had to keep asking them to repeat it, that strange figure of theirs?
“Honestly, l am not usually this dim, but how much did you say?”
“£282.50 Mr Matier”
“For everything, is that per tooth maybe?”
“Why would we charge you nearly £300 per tooth?”
“Is that top and bottom teeth?”
“Mr Matier, is this too little or too much?”
“I am astonished, you don’t know me well enough and my face is hidden behind a mask, but my eyes are saying ‘Seriously??’ l am dumbfounded, l was expecting to hear around £5000 thousand pounds minimum.”
“Oh right, well no. £282.50 will cover the whole lot these will be a temporary set till the new set are built for you and then there will be another smaller cost, but yes basically that figure awards you a new set of gnashers.”
I am still dumbfounded and think there has been a terrible mistake, and that maybe there is a clerical error to be discovered, but l have paid the full amount and l return to the dentists on the 21st June, the day the UK opens up again and the longest day of the year to start the first of a few journeys to getting my smile back at an astonishing and totally affordable price as a new NHS patient to the dental surgery l joined last year as a private patient! The other good news if you can call it that is that l don’t have an abscess in my mouth, but l do have a mouth filled with infection and apparently this can qualify me as an NHS patient and l fall under Band 3.
I still think there is a catch somewhere, how l was being quoted high figures like £20,000 and £5,000 last year privately from the same dentist that is now only going to charge me £282.50 as an NHS patient ……… but excuse the pun, but l think l have pulled a right result here! By the end of September at the very latest, l am going to have to start teaching me how to smile again 🙂
Finally something to feel good about and after last night’s terrible sleep, l should sleep better tonight!
Anyway, thanks for reading the update, l’ll keep you all informed!