Making a complaint to your NHS dentist

This page tells you where to start when you have had an issue with your dental treatment.
Dentists wearing protective face covering with patient

What you might want to complain about

NHS dentists have to follow certain standards and rules and if they don't, you can make a complaint. You can complain if you have received poor care, if you have had an infection, or if you have been charged more for the treatment than you expected. 

Here is a list of some things that could go wrong.

Where do you start? 

If you feel comfortable doing so, it’s always best to mention your concern to the member of staff you are dealing with or their manager. They may be able to sort things out for you.

If speaking to the practice manager does not resolve your complaint, then you can proceed to submit a formal complaint to the practice. 

How to submit a formal NHS dentist complaint

Before you submit your formal complaint to your dentist, it is important that you know their Complaints Policy. If you cannot find the policy online, you can call reception and ask them to send it to you. 

The complaints policy will include important information about what to expect with this complaint, including:  

  • Who you should send your formal complaint to. 

  • When you can expect a response. 

  • What action will be taken. 

  • What to do if you are unhappy with the response from the surgery

For more advice on how to make a complaint about an NHS dental service, please see the advice on the Citizen's Advice website

Other ways you can share your experience 

You can also leave feedback about the dentist online. Your review will be available publicly for other people to see. You can review your health and care provider:  

If you cannot resolve your complaint locally

If you have a complaint about a GP, dentist, pharmacist or optician that cannot be resolved locally with the practice manager or pharmacist, you should contact NHS England.

Tel: 0300 311 2233 (free national number)


More information

We know that making a complaint about NHS or social care services can be confusing. We've worked with Citizens Advice to provide you with the information you need to make a complaint when things go wrong.

Citizens Advice: NHS dentist complaints

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