No excuse at sea for missing a check-up

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HOW DO you get to the dentist 8,000 miles from home?

If you are a Royal Navy ship, the dentist visits you – all the way from Plymouth!

Currently deployed away from her home port of Devonport on Atlantic Patrol Task (South), HMS Montrose has been visited by the flying dentist from HMS Drake Dental Centre, Devonport Naval Base.

Surgeon Lieutenant Commander (Lt Cdr) Alistair Lovell and Dental Nurse Jade Hutchison joined the frigate on deployment island-hopping around the South Atlantic.

Lt Cdr Lovell said: “It is always a challenge for ships and other units to remain in date for dental treatment when they away from the UK for a significant period. We provide a valuable capability by being able to deploy with all the equipment we need to conduct a broad range of treatment – this has been a highly successful trip for us and we leave HMS Montrose dentally fit for the remainder of her deployment.”

Lt Cdr Lovell treated 97 of HMS Montrose’s crew. Aside from routine check-ups and hygiene treatment, he performed emergency extractions, root canal fillings and treated a severely infected wisdom tooth.

Running the clinics on board meant the team had a ‘captive’ audience, with even the most reluctant patients in the chair for a check-up! After 10 days on board, 88 per cent of the crew were fully dentally fit with the remainder on longer term treatment.

The ship is due to return to Devonport later this year.