£5,000 Awarded to Lady after Dental Negligence

Rachel Dixon came to Express Solicitors in 2012 after years of dental problems that had been caused by clinical negligence.

In 1996 Rachel Dixon was 26 years old and broke her tooth as she was biting into an apple. Through her job, she paid a monthly fee to Denplan insurance which meant that she was eligible for private dental care.

After breaking her tooth she made an emergency appointment with her dentist who applied a temporary filling. This filling fell out within one week and Ms Dixon was given antibiotics for an infection that was caused because of this. Despite the problems, because she had had private dental treatment, her monthly payment to Denplan also increased.

Ms Dixon continued to develop infections and was given several courses of antibiotics before being told at an appointment, that she had attended for root canal work, that she had the tooth-wear of someone who’s forty. It was suggested that the wear could have been due to her grinding her teeth in her sleep and was told that if her teeth became worse she would be fitted with a mouth guard.

“I did not realise the wear got worse and worse. My back tooth was worn down to an angle. I did not think about it and trusted they would mention it to me. “

Ms Dixon continued to pay her monthly premiums to Denplan and therefore remained a private dental patient for a further three years. However, when she lost her job she became an NHS patient; this meant that although she could go to the same dental surgery, she could not see the same dentist.

She started having treatment with her new dentist and neither teeth grinding or a mouth guard were ever suggested.

In 2008 it was found that Ms Dixon had a stress fracture due to her bite. This was filled but the filling was left protruding from the tooth which made life extremely uncomfortable. Rachel went back to the same practice but saw another dentist who filed down the tooth. This left sharp edges and prevented her teeth from meeting as they had always done before. During this time she continued to have problems with the tooth that had undergone root canal treatment and was given four further sets of antibiotics over the coming years.

In 2009 she suggested to another dentist – at the same practice – that twelve years previously it had been thought that a mouth guard may be necessary because she was grinding her teeth during the night. After a week of experimentation, this dentist agreed and fitted Rachel with a mouth guard on her bottom set of teeth.

Over time, Rachel began to suffer with severe headaches and neck ache so she started to see an osteopath regularly. At this time – around the end of 2009 – she also joined a new dental practice, with the NHS, where she was told she would need a new mouth guard and that it must be worn every night.

After even more infections in her problem tooth, she was given the option of further root canal treatment or a tooth extraction. Rachel opted for root canal treatment which cost £615. During the operation the dental surgeon found the remains of part of a surgical tool that had been left behind after the original operation.

This oversight caused Rachel Dixon years of pain and discomfort. Over the years she has paid out thousands of pounds for dental treatment, but thanks to the hard work of Anna Pearson at Express Solicitors, she has managed to claim back £5,000 in compensation.

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