Can You Be Registered with Two NHS Dentists?

NHS Dentist

Can You Be Registered with Two NHS Dentists?

Navigating the NHS dental system can be confusing. This is especially true for registering with dentists. A common question that arises is whether one can be registered with two NHS dentists simultaneously. Understanding the rules of the NHS will help patients. They can make informed decisions about their dental care. In this article, we delve into the details of NHS dental registration to clarify this query.

Understanding NHS Dental Registration

Registration with an NHS dentist means that a dental practice has accepted you as a patient and will provide NHS services. This registration is important because it ensures patients receive affordable dental care. However, unlike GP registration, NHS dental registration doesn’t mean you’ll get regular check-ups. Patients need to actively maintain their relationship with the dentist.

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Can You Be Registered with Two NHS Dentists?

In short, no. The NHS system is designed to have patients registered with only one NHS dentist at a time. Here’s why:

  • Resource Management: The NHS aims to distribute dental care resources fairly. Being registered with one dentist ensures more patients have access to services.
  • Continuity of Care is key. Staying with one dentist ensures consistent care. It also lets the dentist understand your dental history better.
  • For administrative reasons, having one registration is simpler. It reduces burdens on the NHS by simplifying records and billing.

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Changing Your NHS Dentist

You may change your NHS dentist if you’re unhappy with your current care or move to a new location. Here’s how:

  • Find a New Dentist: Use the NHS website or ask for recommendations to find a new dental practice.
  • Contact the New Practice: Confirm they accept new NHS patients and book an appointment.
  • Old practice dentist will request your records from the old practice. This will ensure a smooth transition.

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Receiving Specialist or Emergency Care

There are exceptions where you might receive treatment from a second dentist:

  • Specialist Referrals: Your regular NHS dentist might refer you to a specialist for advanced treatment. This referral doesn’t affect your primary registration.
  • Emergency treatment need urgent care while travelling, you can visit a nearby dentist for emergency treatment. It won’t affect your usual registration.

Private and NHS Dental Care

While you cannot register with two NHS dentists, you can have both an NHS and a private dentist. This flexibility allows you to benefit from affordable NHS care. You can also access private treatments that may not be on the NHS.

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Maintaining Your NHS Dental Registration

To keep your NHS registration active:

  • Attend Regular Appointments: Visit your dentist regularly, typically every six months to a year.
  • Respond to Reminders: If your dentist sends reminders for check-ups, be sure to book an appointment.
  • Update Contact Information: Inform your dentist if you change your address or phone number.


You cannot be registered with two NHS dentists at once. But, this policy exists to ensure fairness and efficiency in healthcare. Knowing the rules for registration and changing dentists can help you navigate your dental care. Remember: emergency treatments and specialist referrals add flexibility. They ensure you get the care you need when you need it.

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Frequently Asked Question

Can I have a regular NHS dentist and an emergency NHS dentist?

You can have one registered NHS dentist. But, you can seek emergency treatment elsewhere if your regular dentist is unavailable. Inform both dentists about your treatments for coordinated care.

How do I switch between NHS dentists?

To switch, de-register from your current dentist, and register with a new one. This ensures a smooth transition and maintains the continuity of your dental care.

What happens to my dental records if I change dentists?

Your new NHS dentist can request your records from your previous practice. This helps ensure seamless care continuity and keeps your treatment history intact.

Can I temporarily register with an NHS dentist?

Yes, if you’re staying at a different location, like at university, you can register temporarily. You can keep your regular dentist back home.

Does my dental registration expire?

NHS dental registration lasts for 12 months after your last treatment. Regular visits help maintain your registration and ensure continued access to your dentist.