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Dental negligence claims – what you need to know

The moment comes for a family photo or a selfie with a loved one on a sunny beach …’say cheese’, everyone in the picture has a bright wide smile, except you. Your teeth are shielded by your lips. You are conscious of the condition of your teeth, is this because you are a victim of dental negligence?

Your teeth are not only important to your health but also your self-esteem. When something happens to them it can feel like the end of the world. You feel like you can’t smile even if you wanted to.

Whilst you may think that dental negligence stops with your teeth, the actual extent of a dental negligence case can go much deeper than the appearance of your teeth.

We are going to look at the different types of dental negligence claims that can be made.

There are two main types, which victims of dental negligence may make. The first is for misdiagnosis or failure to act. The second is for inadequate or insufficient dental treatment.

Misdiagnosis or failure to act claims

As is evident from the name, misdiagnosis claims may be brought when your dental practitioner fails to identify the correct cause of your dental problem. As a result of misdiagnosis, a claim may also be brought for the dental practitioner’s failure to act. Not only will a misdiagnosis fail to fix a dental issue, it may escalate the problem causing further damage to your teeth, gums and jaw.

Inadequate or insufficient dental treatment

These cases are as a result of your dental practitioner using substandard techniques when administering treatment or failing to recognise when treatment is necessary, which can lead to serious issues in the future.

What kind of issues can I claim for?

We’ve put together a list of common cases that can lead to dental negligence claims. Note this list is not exhaustive and many more issues may give rise to a claim.

Root canal treatment

A root canal treatments are complex procedures. They take place over two visits and the work carried out by the dental practitioner needs to be precise and accurate. Roots should be measured and the margins correct.

Extractions

If you have ever experienced a tooth extraction you’ll know just how painful it can be even when carried out in a professional and competent manner. If however, a tooth is extracted and the proper precautions or care haven’t been taken, it may lead to problems such as adjacent teeth being damaged, nerve damage, (which may be irreversible) and in some situations blood poisoning.

Of course, unforeseeable complications may occur and in these scenarios, it’s unlikely that a successful claim can be made. However, if you speak to a member of our dental negligence team, they’ll be able to give you advice on whether you will be able to present a claim.

Cosmetic procedures

When a patient undergoes a cosmetic procedure for their teeth, they’re usually hoping to improve their smile. However, should you become the victim of dental negligence at the hands of a cosmetic dentist, you can be left with serious dental issues.

Cosmetic procedures include veneers, crowns, and bridges. Before you have any work done your dentist should conduct an extensive assessment of your oral health and hygiene and establish what it is you are hoping to achieve.

If they fail to do this, they run the risk of carrying out a procedure that isn’t suitable or appropriate and thus may become liable for a claim.

Gum disease

If you have been seeing your dentist for a number of years and they failed to diagnose the onset of gum disease, you may be able to make a claim.

Gum disease can lead to pain and bleeding gums and in advanced cases can lead to tooth loss and infection. Repairing the damage caused by gum disease can be painful and expensive.

In order to know for certain that you are eligible to make a valid claim for dental negligence, you should contact a specialist personal injury solicitor that specialises in dental negligence cases.

Here at Thorneycroft Solicitors, we have specialist solicitors who are experienced in dealing with all manner of dental negligence claims. If a dentist or dental practitioner has caused you any harm or discomfort then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with a member of our team.

We offer a free initial interview in order to review your specific circumstances and assess the viability of your dental negligence claim.

To speak to one of our specialist team call us now on FREEPHONE 0800 093 2030, or complete our simple enquiry form and we can call you back at a time to suit you.