When people mention medical negligence, the first response tends to be that a hospital or doctor has made a mistake that has affected someone’s health. However, anyone within the healthcare profession can get things wrong, including opticians, care homes, physiotherapists, pharmacists and even dentists.
How Can a Dentist Make a Mistake?
Dentists in the UK are very highly trained, and you would not expect them to make a mistake. Unfortunately for the patient, sometimes they do get it wrong and the results can be worse than you may think. Extracting the wrong tooth can easily happen if not enough care is taken.
If a tooth breaks while being taken out, the dentist should not continue without taking an X-ray of the roots that are left. If they do carry on and do not have the skill or experience to get the rest of the tooth extracted successfully, you may be entitled to make a compensation claim for medical negligence. Consulting with firms such as The Medical Negligence Experts who offer free over the phone advice would be the best way for you to then determine if your claim is feasible, as then you’re not paying any expenses before you know if you should move forward.
Most extractions take place without any problems as long as the dentist has carried out a thorough examination to be clear that a tooth does need taking out. Substandard care at this time could lead to the nerves in your gum being damaged, meaning you could be entitled to make a medical negligence claim.
If they are filling a tooth for you and slip with the drill, you could get a nasty cut on your cheek, which may even leave a permanent scar. If they do not remove all the decay before putting in the filling material, the decay will continue to spread and cause further problems. If your dentist makes a mistake when filling one or more of your teeth, you may want to speak with medical negligence solicitors about claiming compensation.
If you are undergoing cosmetic dental surgery and your crowns are poorly fitted, they can become a food trap and cause discomfort. Veneers that are not correctly fitted can fall off and an ill-fitting bridge becomes difficult to clean and can cause further decay. Any cosmetic procedure that is carried out without enough care and attention, especially if it causes you more pain and problems with your teeth, could entitle you to make medical negligence claims UK.
Apart from checking your teeth at each check-up, your dentist should also be looking for signs of gum disease and oral cancer. Unless you have visited your GP with some of the symptoms of oral cancer, it is far more likely your dentist will be the first to spot this possibility. If they ignore or overlook the signs and fail to alert you to the disease, this could be classed as medical malpractice, for which you can make a compensation claim.
Before a dentist carries out your treatment, they should explain exactly what they’re intending to do and inform you of any risks or side effects associated with the procedure.
Making Your Compensation Claim
Making a compensation claim for any form of medical negligence is a legal process and you’ll benefit from having the best medical negligence solicitors on your side. Personal injury claims tend to fall into specific groups, such as road traffic accident, accidents at work, accidents in public places, and medical negligence. Lawyers usually specialise in one particular area, so rather than use an expert in road traffic accidents, for instance, you need medical negligence lawyers when your dentist gets it wrong.
Even though insurance companies usually settle compensation claims, they will not just take your word that a mistake has been made. They will want evidence to prove your claim, and they are looking for a more than 50% chance that their client mistreated you. They will achieve this by speaking to other experts in the dentistry field to see if they would have treated you any differently, and ask whether the other experts agree that the care you received was below par. If the independent expert says they would have treated you exactly the same, then it’s unlikely you’ll be able to make a compensation claim.
How Much Could Your Claim Be Worth?
No one can answer that question at the outset of your claim, as there are too many different aspects to be considered. Your pain and suffering is used for the main part of the calculation, but then there are also any extra costs you have incurred, which also have to be accounted for. There could also be lost wages if you have had to take time off to attend extra appointments. Each victim’s personal circumstances are different making each claim unique. The only thing you can be sure of is expert medical negligence solicitors will ensure you are awarded the maximum amount for your situation.