MORE THAN 1,000 callers to NHS 111 in Thames Valley required dental treatment in the last month, as dentists remain closed during the lockdown.

No date has been given for the reopening of dental practises across England with only a few hundred acting as urgent care hubs in their place.

NHS England data shows that 1,130 callers in April were recommended to seek help at one of the hubs in their place by the 111 service.

It is more than double the 564 referred in March.

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With all routine dentistry stopped for almost two months, around 400 urgent dental care hubs have been operating across the country in response.

More than 80,000 NHS 111 users across England were recommended dental help from the service in April alone – more than double that of the month before.

NHS 111 services across England took 1.7m calls in April, with 7per cent of triaged calls being advised to see a dentist.

In Thames Valley, this was the case for 9per cent of calls.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has previously told MPs that reopening dentists practices has to be done in a safe way, particularly over the use of aerosols. He said that dentistry 'by nature' requires close contact.