A Week in the Life of... a Specialist in Special Care Dentistry

So Week in the Life posts have been a feature of my blog ever since I was a DCT... and I've featured many others' typical weeks. So it only seems fitting to describe what my week is like now I am a Specialist!

So now I am a specialist, weeks don't always look the same! I work between the Community Dental Services and the Charitable sector with Dentaid. I also need to balance my roles within the British Dental Association and Managed Clinical Network Deputy Chair - so between patients and lunchtimes there might be meeting or two squeezed in! 

But here is an example week...


I'm at one of the community dental clinics I work at seeing patients referred to me for treatment under IV sedation. This might be because of severe phobia, learning disabilities, limited mouth opening, severe gag reflexes or to control a tremor. 

I will also see any patients for treatment under local anaesthetic - for example people with medical complexities like cardiac issues, dementia, cancer patients or patients taking bisphosphonates.


This is my day dedicated to Dentaid as their Clinical Director. This could be working from home on the guidelines and policies of the service, having meetings, heading down to our HQ in Totton to be in the office with the team, or even doing one of our  mobile clinics. 

Wednesday and Thursday 

I'm back in another community clinic, seeing complex special care adults for assessments and treatments, including under conscious sedation. A lot of my patients might require hoist transfers to the dental chair as they use wheelchairs, and occasionally I might see a patient on a stretcher. 

In between my clinical duties, I might have meetings or teaching sessions - for example as part of our Managed Clinical Network, sedation meetings or training sessions for our staff. 


Once a month, we have a general anaesthetic list to see patients who cannot have their treatment any other way for example due to severe learning disability. This list is hosted by an external trust so it takes a lot of organisation and communication... and lots of emails! 

Currently, I'm off on maternity leave so my weeks are never the same, with sporadic routine looking after my little one! And certainly when I do go back to working, I am sure that my week will look very different to this! 

Specialists in Special Care Dentistry can work in the CDS like I do, hospital dental services or even in general practice (for example providing sedation or domiciliary visits). I would love to hear from other specialists to hear about how your week goes! Although as those of you who work with Special Care patients will know.... there is never a 'typical' week in Special Care Dentistry!

Do you have any questions about Special Care Dentistry or applying for specialist training? Leave them in the comments below.

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