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In the Teeth of the State

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CNN reports on a new study [2] that finds that Brits are pulling their own teeth and otherwise providing self-dentistry because of their difficulty of finding affordable dentists — yet further evidence that government-supplied health care is unhealthy.  Here are the opening paragraphs:

Some English people have resorted to pulling out their own teeth
because they cannot find — or cannot afford — a dentist, a major
study has revealed.

Six percent of those questioned in a survey of 5,000 patients
admitted they had resorted to self-treatment using pliers and glue, the
UK’s Press Association reported.

England has a two-tier dental
care system with some dentists offering publicly subsidized treatment
through the National Health Service and others performing more
expensive private work.

But more than three-quarters of those
polled said they had been forced to pay for private treatment because
they had been unable to find an NHS dentist. Almost a fifth said they
had refused dental treatment because of the cost.

One respondent
in Lancashire, northern England, claimed to have extracted 14 of their
own teeth with a pair of pliers. In Liverpool, one of those collecting
data for the survey interviewed three people who had pulled out their
own teeth in one morning.

"I took most of my teeth out in the shed with pliers. I have one to go," another respondent wrote.

Others said they had fixed broken crowns using glue to avoid costly dental work.

(HT Brian Summers.)

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