The British Dental Association (BDA) is the professional association and trade union for dentists in the United Kingdom and was founded in 1880.

As an organisation that is owned entirely by its members and with no external shareholders, the BDA is able to focus solely on its mission to promote the interests of its members; advance the science, arts and ethics of dentistry, and improve the nation’s oral health.

The BDA is:

A trade union

They provide collective representation of the profession in its dealings with governments and employing authorities.

A professional organisation

They promote policies which benefit dental practice and dental care, and champion higher standards.

A lobbying organisation

They lobby politicians on legislation affecting dentists as business people and clinicians, and on issues such as dental student debt, care for special needs patients and commissioning and contract arrangements. In Europe they lobby the commission and the European parliament, and their influence extends throughout the world.

A scientific society​​

They publish the British Dental Journal and promote the role of evidence-based dental care. Their expert opinion is often cited in the media.

As a membership organisation the BDA is dependent upon members’ subscriptions and the strength of its membership.

Services to members include the following:

  • Detailed advice on NHS rules and regulations
  • Help with individual problems including representation at a national or international level in contractual disputes with employers and with NHS Trusts
  • Help and information on practice management, scientific and clinical topics
  • Guidance on employment law, health and safety and ethics
  • Access to a vast back of dental literature, Medline searches, videos and study packs