Special care dental service

  • Special care dental team at HCT Our Special Care Dental Service treats patients from Hertfordshire who are unable to access dental treatment from their local high street dentist. We are an award winning service who are passionate about providing a caring environment for special needs patients.

    Special care dental service information poster

    Contact the service

    General enquiries: 01727 732051
    Home visits: 01727 732053

    “They really listen and will only do what you want them to do and if you want them to stop they will stop and explain everything so you really understand.”

    “Just the best dentist ever!”

  • Reception phone number: 01727 732051

How the service is provided

We are a referral service and have four clinics based at Watford, Letchworth, Hemel Hempstead and Cheshunt. All our experienced dentists and dental nurses aim to provide dentistry in a calm and non-threatening environment. We work hard to ensure that our patients feel safe and that they have a pleasant experience when they come to see us.

  • We operate a general anaesthetic service at The Lister Hospital in Stevenage
  • All our clinics offer inhalation sedation and IV sedation is available at Hemel Hempstead and Cheshunt clinics
  • We offer Domiciliary dentistry for patients who are unable to leave their homes
  • We provide school screenings at special needs schools.
  • Our team of oral health educators are passionate about improving our patient’s oral health and work with patients, carers and families in our clinics and within our Domiciliary service.

You can watch a video of one of our team members providing oral health education here.

Our teams

The Hemel Team

The HCT special dental care service team in Hemel“Thanks to the whole team for treating mum  with the sedation, you will have made a real  difference to her quality of life, now she won’t  have any pain.”




The Watford team

HCT special care dental service team in Watford

“Thank you so much ladies. You were stars as usual today. I was    so impressed last time. When I told my husband how good you were with * I was quite emotional and teary. You really understood about his autism. At other appointments we have attended not everyone is  as understanding about autism.”



The Cheshunt team

Cheshunt Special Care Dental Team

“The communication between myself and the staff made me feel very relaxed and not afraid I enjoyed the experience.”




The Letchworth team

Letcworth Special Care Dental Team

“Regarding my Dentist, She is without exception, the best Dentist that I have ever seen in my life. The work she has done has done on my teeth so far is absolutely brilliant, she explains everything so clear to me and she is so kind and caring.”







The GA team

"Everyone looked after * and myself so well, the team were so clever in the way they came up with ideas to make the whole experience as pleasant as possible."

The DOM team

“All the time you get phone calls to complain and needing emergency appointments, so I thought I would call today to say thank you. You have all been very helpful. You have relieved me from the pain. The service I received from you all is very good. I appreciate the way you have managed to see me and to talk to me over the phone.”

The Admin team

“Thank you to the whole dental team. The ladies in the admin office were very helpful and kind. The dentist who came to see me at home last year was fantastic. I really appreciate the treatment you have given to me today in the clinic. Thank you for explaining everything to me and for the care you have given me. You have been brilliant.”

Who is eligible for the service

  • Wheelchair users unable to transfer to the dental chair without the use of a hoist.
  • Adults and children with a diagnosed moderate/severe learning disability who cannot be managed in general dental practice.
  • Adults and children with a diagnosed moderate/severe mental health problem who cannot be managed in general dental practice.
  • Adults and children with complex medical conditions not manageable in general dental practice.

What will happen at your appointment

The dentist will ask you questions about your health and examine your teeth. 

  • With your permission, the dentist may take x-ray pictures of your teeth.
  • The dentist will talk to you about your dental needs and agree a treatment plan with you that you are both happy with.
  • The dentist will talk to you about your diet and how best to look after your teeth to minimise any future dental problems.
  • The dental staff will make you a further appointment to begin your dental treatment if needed.

You may find the following social stories useful before your visit to the dentist.

The Marlowes Health and Wellbeing Centre (Hemel Hempstead) social story

The Peace Children's Centre (Watford) social story

Nevells Road Health Centre (Letchworth) social story

The Cheshunt Community Hospital social story


Useful information


The Oral Health Foundation is a charity dedicated to raising public awareness of dental and oral health and promoting good dental health practices


Have you heard of the Local Offer?  If you are a young person with, or have a child with special educational needs and disabilities, (SEND) the Local Offer is Hertfordshire’s central source of information for SEND services and support.

Visit www.hertsdirect.org/localoffer for an easily accessible one stop shop.

Mouthcare Matters from Health Education England

Purple Star Strategy health services for people with learning disabilities

Healthwatch Hertfordshire independent voice for health and social care in Hertfordshire

Useful videos

Children's teeth Adults' teeth
British society for paediatric dentistry (BSPD)
Kids videos collection
Supporting patients who are resistant to nouth care -
Guiding a patient to brush their teeth
How to care for the teeth of children aged 0-3 with Dr Ranj How to clean your teeth or brush other people's teeth
How to care for the teeth of children aged 3-6 with Dr Ranj Looking after the mouth for carers
How to care for the teeth children aged 7+ with Dr Ranj  
Toothbrushing song by Hey Duggee Dentures
CBeebies - My first dentist How to clean a denture
Now you have teeth (Health Education England) Dry Mouth / End of Life oral Care
Brush DJ app Carrying out Mouth Care at EOL
How to take photos of your child's teeth How to provide care for patients with a dry mouth in hospital
Children's dental procedures Other
SDF (Silver Diamine Fluoride) (BSPD) Oral health importance for general health
Silver Crowns (Hall technique) demonstrated on a child Antibiotics for dental problems
Gum health/disease How to do a 45-second mouth cancer check
Gum health/disease educational videos Your dental appointment - A positive choice


Making a referral

If you are eligible for our service then you can ask your dentist to make a referral. Appropriate referrals can be accepted from all healthcare workers.

Please use the following referral forms if you are a health care worker:

If you are a general dental practitioner, please sign up in order to process all referrals at the following website: 


If you are eligible for a home visit in Hertfordshire you can ask your dentist or any healthcare worker to refer you, you can also self-refer. Please use the following referral form

Home visit form 

If you have any questions regarding the referral services for dentistry then please email: hct.hertsdentaladmin@nhs.net where one of the team will be happy to help you.

Patient experience

"Special care is right! You have treated me very specially today and you are all amazing."

It is very important to everyone in our service that people have a positive experience when they come to see us.

If you would like to share your story, please contact the Patient Experience team on 01707 388036 or email pals.hchs@nhs.net.

We would also love to hear about your experience on our service; please complete our survey with your feedback.