Families are left in pain as they can’t access NHS dentists, a watchdog warns.

Four in five patients who contacted Healthwatch England this summer had struggled to get appointments.

It says accessing dental treatment is the most raised issue and said some are waiting three years to be seen while others had pulled out their own teeth.

Chairman Sir Robert Francis QC said: “Every part of the country faces a dental care crisis.

"We’ve heard from parents unable to register children at an NHS dentist, as practices weren’t taking on patients, had gone private or closed.”

Healthwatch England and the British Dental Association are demanding a Government recovery plan for dentistry.

Dentists say they do not get enough per NHS patient to increase places.

Funding per head fell from £41.79 to £34.53 from 2010 to 2020.

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