A 62-year-old man from Cornwall was forced to pull out one of his own teeth after being kept on waiting list for over 18 months to see a dentist.
David Woodhouse said he had been unable to get an appointment for a surgery with an NHS dentist near his home in Cornwall.
NHS England encourages patients in need of urgent dental care to contact its emergency helpline. But for Woodhouse the wait was so long and the pain was getting difficult to bear, that extracted his tooth on his own.
"The removal itself was considerably less painful than the long-term pain I was experiencing," Woodhouse said.
Explaining how he pulled out his tooth, Woodhouse said, "I had a loose one and it was causing me a little bit of pain, so I got the needle-nose pliers and out it came." The country's health situation is like that some people had been waiting for over three years to register with a dentist.
"I'm not looking forward to the next tooth coming loose, I may have to consider a bank loan to go private, but why should I? I feel so embarrassed as well, it would be nice to eat an apple or a steak again one day, the engineer added. "I tried to get an NHS dentist. I went online - nothing. I went on a waiting list - nothing. It's like looking for gold dust," he said.
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