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Dr Antonia Paolella

BDS Lond 1977 | GDC: 51642
12 YRS Certified for +12 Years Offers sedation Certified until 1st May, 2025
3 Reviews

About Dr Antonia Paolella

With over 40 years of experience working in private practice, Dr Paolella is regarded as one of the most experienced general practitioners working in the UK. 

Dr Paolella’s love of dentistry means that she has kept her up to date with the latest developments in technology and technique throughout her career. She has continually invested in the newest equipment to ensure the best possible treatment for all her patients.

Although very skilled and experienced in a wide range of dental treatments, Dr Paolella’s speciality is treating patients with dental phobia. Her knowledge and caring nature when assisting anxious patients mean she can provide thorough treatment to those with complex needs arising from years of dental neglect.

Before treatment, Dr Paolella will talk you through everything that’s going to happen and discuss your anxieties. This will help you feel more at ease.

To help anxious patients further, Dr Paolella provides sedation dentistry. While sedated, you’ll remain conscious; however, you’ll feel completely relaxed. You’ll be aware of what’s happening around you, but you’ll feel at ease for the duration of your treatment. 

After the sedatives have worn off, your memory of the procedure may be hazy; however, the use of sedation generally makes the experience more positive. 

The Gentle Dentist

The Gentle Dentist is a private dental practice situated in Covent Garden. The clinic is within a brief walk of Tottenham Court Road, Hoborn, and Covent Garden tube stations. 

At the clinic, you’ll find a range of treatments performed by a very experienced team. In addition to general dentistry, the practice provides natural-looking aesthetic restorations, orthodontics, as well as treatments for gum disease and bruxism. 

To distract you during your treatment, the clinic always has music playing. If you’re worried about the sounds of any of the tools they use, you can also use headphones.

The practice treats children of all ages and the languages spoken by the team include English and Portuguese.


61 Shelton Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9HE 020 7395 0520 Visit website


Hannah T

ON 15th January, 2021

After not going to the dentist in several years due to being terrified, I broke a tooth and had to make an appointment. I found The Gentle Dentist through and I have been so happy. I've seen mixed reviews but I have found the team are kind, patient and not judgemental over the terrible state that I have let my teeth get into. I have now had multiple appointments and I am (never happy) but willing to go, which is a massive step for me. I had my first ever hygienist appointment as well as having had conscious sedation for some major work which has been absolutely amazing, I don't remember the treatment at all! and even a root canal without any sedation, they used big headphones with music to calm me and keep me from hearing more than I wanted. The cost of treatment is completely worth it to me, and they are very helpful with my insurance and arranging payment plans when I was worrying about money (COVID times have hit me hard) The team at The Gentle Dentist are rapidly reducing my fears with every appointment and I would recommend them to anybody.

M Whitham

ON 3rd March, 2016

I visited Dr Antonia Paolella in March 2015, when I was experiencing toothache and my regular dentist (an excellent phobic patient specialist dentist whom I would highly recommend to anyone at the BUPA dental cenre in Bank - I have reviewed elsewhere on thsi site) was on leave and not able to see me for two weeks. As a phobic patient, I did an internet search for dentists who specialise in this area and chose Dr Paolella specifically because of her focus on treating anxious patients. Unfortunately, my experience was not positive and as somebody who has seen many dentists over the year, including many specialists in anxious patients, Dr Paolella's approach to a nervous patient fell far below what I would expect from an understanding and sympathetic practitioner. Here are some examples of what I consider to be real failings on her part towards me as a nervous patient, which I'm sure other fellow phobics will identify with as causing further stress / anxiety: - I was put in the dentists chair and made to wait there before Dr Paolella entered the room. - When Dr Paolella entered she did not introduce herself, her opening words to me (not hello…) was "you look very defensive", because I had my arms crossed in the chair. I was not even clear on whether or not she was the dentist or another member of the team. She then moved into position behind me in the chair and started asking (from above me) what the problem was - at which point I realised it was the dentist. - She was very condescending regarding the fact that I admitted I knew I needed a filling in the tooth which was causing the pain, but had been putting off making the appointment for the treatment (as it had not until that point been painful). I would not expect a dental phobic specialist dentist to embarrass a nervous patient about avoiding treatment. - When she then inspected my teeth the phrase she used to describe the issue in the tooth causing the pain was "gross decay". This may be accurate dental terminology, but I have never had a dentist use this term before and it seems particularly unnecessary in the context of treating an anxious patient when other less unpleasant language would convey the information just as well. - she did not take the time to explain what treatment she was going to provide, and when she was suddenly telling it was time to open up for an injection, I had to stop her and ask her to down tools to take a moment and actually go through what she was planning to do (the issues she identified were not as straight forward as just that 1 x filling). Her explanation was satisfactory when she did give it, but I was very unsettled by her intention to just get started until I stopped her and asked. I believe not providing adequate communication in this situation is pretty negligent all round to be honest, never mind when you are an anxious patient. - At the end of the treatment, Dr Paolella rushed off and did not take even a few minutes to explain to me what the follow up treatment I needed involved. I barely had time to sit up, have the plastic dam she had clamped in around the tooth removed and rinse before she was half way out the door - I had to stop to ask her what the next steps were. She told me the nurse / receptionist would explain it (fair enough if she had another appointment to get to, but a better approach from someone claiming to specialising in phobic patients and making patients feel valued and respected, would have been to say "I'm sorry I have to rush off to another patient but X will be able to give you your treatment plan and answer any questions". What I will say in all of this is that when I then saw my regular dentist for the rest of the treatment I needed (obviously I was NOT inclined to ever go back to Dr Paolella), she commented that the work Dr Paolella had done was of a high quality. ). All in all, I was very disappointed that Dr Antonia Paolella claims to specialise in helping phobic patients and treatment them with respect, but in fact in my experience did no such thing. I know from personal experience how debilitating dental phobia can be, and the time I have taken to provide this review is because I hope to help other phobics make a good choice about which dentist they see. In my experience there are much more understanding, sympathetic practitioners in London.

Helen McManus

ON 5th March, 2012

I've always had a fear of the dentist and steered well clear of it as i was so scared to have anyone look inside my mouth. Having needed emergency treatment, i was welcomed in to The Gentle Dentist without an appointment and looked after straight away. They understood my anxieties and kept reassuring me through all my treatment and ensured that i was calm at all times. They put up with lot of screaming and panic attacks from me but they took it in their stride and stayed calm and reassured me. i have now had multiple filling's done, extractions and have ceramic braces and do not panic about getting into the chair anymore. Yes i still get anxious but they talk you through it and explain everything that you need to know. You are always greeted with a smile and they go above and beyond what you expect of them. the additional things that make this practice great is that you get a choice of music through treatment, a dvd player that you wear so you are oblivious to what is going on around you and they make every point to accommodate you and your needs. They will see you last minute and the prices are very competitive. What's great is that you can pay in installments and have the cost spread out! From someone who hated the dentist and had such a fear of it, i now enjoy going to see their lovely smiley faces and get the advice and guidance i need. Excellent treatment from excellent staff - always

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