More than 30,000 people in the north-east have registered with an NHS dentist in the last year, according to official figures.
New statistics for 2018/19 have revealed 30,202 patients signed up with health service specialists and that includes 8,534 children.
The figures, which run up to March this year, shows NHS Grampian has the second highest registration rate in Scotland, with only NHS Highland bettering the north-east.
The average number of adults registered for every NHS Grampian dental practice is 4,032 with 1,036 children. The total percentage of the region’s population registered with dentists is 83.2%.
Health board officials have said they are encouraged by the number of people signing up with dentists and will continue to strive towards improvements.
An NHS Grampian spokeswoman said: “It is important to emphasise that this report only includes data on patients registered with a NHS dentist. It does not include data for patients registered with or treated by private dentists.
“We have come a long way from historically high waiting lists across Grampian. Although the waiting lists are now cleared, many patients have chosen to remain private as they have developed good relationships with their dentists, which is very important.
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“We continue to work towards improving both registration and participation rates across Grampian.”
Across Scotland, 185,765 people registered with NHS dentists and the current national registration rates standing at 94.9%.
Public health minister Joe FitzPatrick said the statistics were down to the Scottish Government’s dental improvement scheme.
He said: “These figures show the level of our investment over the past year, including a near £12 million increase to enable more independent dentists to provide NHS treatments.
“More dentists are providing NHS dental care, with the number of people registered now at record levels – clear evidence of the Scottish Government’s commitment to dentistry, patients and the NHS.”