The Community Dental Service in South Tyneside, Sunderland and Gateshead provides a full range of dental treatment for patients of all ages whose complex needs mean they have difficulty in accessing general dental services (high street/family practice).

We aim to provide high quality dental care locally for patients with a wide range of individual needs. This includes individuals who are medically compromised or have mental health issues; adults and children with severe learning disabilities or physical disabilities and children with behavioural management issues.

We also carry out oral health promotion and epidemiology and work closely with education, social and other health care professionals.

Where patients have a learning difficulty or cognitive impairment, inhalation sedation or intravenous sedation may be useful. We carry out treatment under general anaesthetic in a hospital setting for young children or for adults with special needs.

We have specialist equipment such as wheelchair recliner, hoists and transfer aids.

Certain medical conditions can increase the risk in having dental treatment and our team is experienced in dealing with these.

The service will accept appropriate referrals from a health or social care professional. These will be for any person who lives in Gateshead, South Tyneside or Sunderland. All referrals will first be triaged to make sure they meet our acceptance criteria. These will be confirmed after a face-to-face assessment.

Referrals should be made to our central office:

Referrals Coordinator
Clarendon House
Windmill Way
Tyne & Wear
NE31 1AT

Patients can expect to be sent an offer letter for an assessment appointment within 4 weeks. 

Contact us

Tel:  0191 502 6750

Fax: 0191 404 1347



Finding us

We have multiple clinics which provide dental services based at:

  • Blaydon Primary Care Centre
  • Wrekenton Health Centre
  • South Tyneside District Hospital
  • Palmer Community Hospital
  • Monkwearmouth Health Centre
  • Washington Primary Care Centre
  • Houghton Health Centre

Please note that NHS dental charges do apply to patients attending our service.

Locations for Community Dental Service in Gateshead:

  • Blaydon Primary Care Centre, Blaydon, 0191 5026750 (3 surgeries)
  • Wrekenton Health Centre, Gateshead, 0191 5026750 (2 surgeries)
  • Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Gateshead, 0191 5026750 (1 surgery)


Locations for Community Dental Service in South Tyneside:

  • South Tyneside District Hospital, South Shields, 0191 5026750 (1/2 surgeries)
  • Palmer Community Hospital, Jarrow, 0191 5026750 (2 surgeries)


Locations for Community Dental Service in Sunderland:

  •  Monkwearmouth Health Centre, Sunderland, 0191 5026750 (4 surgeries)
  • Washington Primary Care Centre, Washington, 0191 5026750 (2 surgeries)
  • Houghton Health Centre, Houghton-le-Spring, 0191 5026750 (2 surgeries)

Our team

Clinical Lead – Marie Holland
Safe Care Lead – Rachel Lish
Dental Nurse Manager – Barbara Appleby
Oral Health Promotion Lead / Manager – Joanne Purvis
Matron – Lesley Johnstone
Operational Manager - Libby McCready
Business Manager - David Newall

Our team includes specialists in special care dentistry. We have dentists, therapists, hygienists, dental nurses and oral health promoters. 

We are skilled in behaviour management techniques and cater for individual needs.

The Oral Health Promotion Team carry out a range of oral health programmes.

These raise awareness and improve the oral health of people living within South of Tyne and Wear.

The team also support national campaigns throughout the year.

These include  National No Smoking Day and National Smile Month.

We also support National Mouth Cancer Action Month.