This section explains what you can expect when your child comes for their first dental appointment.
All of our new patients are assessed at one of our consultant/specialist led clinics. These are usually held every day, Monday-Friday.
Changing or cancelling your appointment
Please call us on 020 7188 7188 extension 50202.
Please tell us as soon as possible so we can offer your appointment to another patient.
Before your appointment
Please complete the children's medical history form (PDF 250Kb).
Please arrive 15 minutes before your appointment time. If you are more than 10 minutes late for your appointment, we may not be able to see you.
We make every effort to see you on time. For your first visit, please allow up to three hours for your appointment.
At your appointment
Our new patient clinics allow you to have a consultation with a specialist or consultant in children's dentistry.
If your child needs further investigations, these will be discussed with you. For example, your child may need:
- clinical photographs
- blood tests.
Some of these may be carried out on the same day as your appointment, but you may need an appointment in another department for other tests.
We may also ask you to have some tests before coming to the clinic for a review appointment.
After your appointment
Most patients receive a diagnosis on the day of their appointment and treatment options will be discussed with you. If your child needs treatment in the department, future appointments will be arranged for this.
Management of dental trauma
Dental trauma includes traumatic dental injuries to the tooth and the supporting structures of the teeth.
- Traumatic dental trauma accounts for between 4% to 30% of children's dental injuries
- At 5 years of age 31% to 40% boys and 16% to 30% of girls will have suffered dental trauma
Correct and timely management of these injuries will improve the long term recovery of the teeth.
Referrals for trauma
Referrals are accepted and seen at a consultant-led trauma clinic which runs on a Friday morning.
The clinics are run at the dental centre at South Wing, St Thomas' Hospital.
We see new patients and provide any necessary treatment.
We accept the following referrals to our clinic:
- fractures of the teeth requiring specialist input (complicated crown fractures). This is where the nerve and blood supply to the tooth might be compromised
- injuries to the root and supporting structures of the teeth requiring specialist input (luxation injuries, fractures to the root of the tooth, fractures to the alveolar bone)
Patients can be referred using our referral system or, if acute, can come through our emergency walk-in service which runs Monday to Friday, 9am to 11.30am.
Other children's dental services
General anaesthetic treatment
If your child requires care to be provided under general anaesthetic this take places on a different day to your child's first appointment.
Day case operations under general anaesthetic take place at:
Dental Day Case Unit
Floor 23, Tower Wing
Great Maze Pond
London SE1 7EH
An alternative inpatient general anaesthetic service for children with medical conditions is also run at Evelina London Children’s Hospital.
Emergency dental service
Our dental department at St Thomas' Hospital no longer provides a walk-in service for dental emergencies. You should call NHS 111 for all dental emergencies, including children's dental emergencies.
This is for children who live in London and are suffering with pain or infection, bleeding from the mouth or those who have injured their teeth and require urgent care.
How to access the service
If your child has a dental emergency, seek advice from your dentist first.
If you believe your child has a dental emergency, for example dental trauma or facial swelling, please call NHS 111.
You will speak to a dental triage nurse on the phone. Your child may be offered an on-the-day appointment for the emergency children's dental service.
Your child may not be seen if it is not an emergency, and this service is only available if you live in or around London.