Register your child with an NHS dentist as soon as you can, and book regular dental health appointments to keep your child's teeth healthy and free from decay.
Finding a dentist
Registering with a NHS dentist is different from registering with a GP as you do not need to live in a particular catchment area. You may find it more convenient to register with a dentist near to where you work.
If you’re not already registered with a dentist, find one on NHS Choices. Some dentists don’t take on NHS patients until they have spaces so you may need to join a waiting list, look for a different NHS dentist or be seen privately.
If, after contacting several dental practices, you still can’t find a dentist accepting NHS patients, you should call NHS England’s Customer Contact Centre on 0300 311 2233.
Taking your child to the dentist
NHS dental care is free for children up to the age of 18 years, or up to 19 years if they’re in full time education. It’s also free if you’re pregnant or if you’ve had a baby within the 12 months before treatment starts.
Children should ideally be going to see the dentist from the moment their first teeth appear. But, it’s never too late to take your child to the dentist.
Regular check-ups every six months or as recommended by your dentist will help your child avoid oral health problems, like tooth decay and gum disease.
For lots of reasons, some people might find going to the dentist difficult. This video shows what happens on a routine visit to see the dentist.
Accessing emergency and out-of-hours care
If you’re in pain and think you need urgent dental care, call 111. You’ll be directed to an appropriate local service.
For more information about NHS dentists and emergency and out of hours service, please visit NHS Choices.