GDC investigations leave many to consider leaving dentistry


Many dentists consider leaving the profession after being investigated by the GDC a new survey has shown.

Many dentists consider leaving the profession after being investigated by the General Dental Council (GDC).

A new survey from Dental Protection has shown that 94% of respondents felt it had an impact on their stress and anxiety and 33% had considered leaving the profession because of the experience of being investigated by the GDC.

‘It is worrying that so many dental professionals feel they are suffering from stress and anxiety as a result of a GDC investigation, but not entirely surprising,’ Kevin Lewis, dental director at Dental Protection, said.

‘Investigations can sometimes take years to conclude meaning dental practitioners have to continue practising while waiting for the GDC to decide their fate.’

Health and wellbeing

The survey of 140 Dental Protection members also showed that 76% believe the investigation impacted on their personal life and 71% felt it affected their health and wellbeing.

A third of respondents (32%) believe they received enough support in looking after their health throughout the investigation.

However, of those, four in 10 (40%) felt they needed clearer expectations from the GDC and one in 10 (11%) were left feeling they needed counselling.

‘GDC investigations can also have a long-lasting effect on dental practitioners, with 67% of respondents believing it impacted on their confidence and a quarter (26%) feeling their future career prospects would be affected,’ Kevin Lewis continued.

‘It is heartening to see that despite the obvious challenges of dealing with a GDC investigation, 49% of members learned from the experience and looked forward to continuing their career.’


  1. 1

    Talk about stating the obvious! Did we really need a survey to come to this conclusion. Of course an investigation by the GDC or any regulatory body will have a massive adverse impact on an individuals wellbeing & confidence. If one is not already practising defensively, a GDC investigation will certainly make one become defensive. Its a well known fact many dentists positively hate the job at the best of times, a GDC investigation would be the final straw to make many reconsider their career options. What we now need are courses that specifically teach the art of practising defensive Dentistry.

  2. 2

    I have experienced a GDC investigation after practising dentistry 30 plus years .I felt traumatised ,depressed ,little support and suicidal .i now hate dentistry , the system , and how it is run .
    The regulatory body are a complete joke ,not fit for purpose .retirement cannot come quickly enough .
    It’s a complete shambles .
    All dentists should call a strike and form their own regulatory body

  3. 3
  4. 4

    Who else is writing day notes with feeling the gun of litigation held towards you head? Gone are the days when I actually wrote them to remember what I did last time.
    I want to leave dentistry although I have not even had an official complaint since I started 23 years ago. When is THAT patient going to turn up? The patient who will with help of GDC will help me in the right direction.

  5. 5

    Sooner than you might think , if the madness continues and it wouldn’t matter how detailed your clinical notes (daganteckningar) are. Just read som of the ” cases” on the GDC’s website and you will see what I mean.
    The answer might be in moving to countries where sanity still prevail.

  6. 6

    I was a patient and I paid a substantial amount upfront to this Dental Professional, Thereafter his bullying started, He never stuck to his word unless I had him email me. I have reported him to the GDC. The upset this man caused me, crying became my hobby. I am happy there is someone you higher you can complain to, He needs to address his attitude.nn1

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