Recent studies have attempted to determine the prevalence of dentine hypersensitivity (DH) in both hospital and general practice. Results indicate that DH prevalence is higher in patients referred for specialist treatment than in general practice. The aim of this study was to determine perception and prevalence of DH in general practice. Completed questionnaires from 277 patients (115 males, 162 females, mean age 41·7 years [SD 14·36]) were collected. Self-reported DH prevalence (52%) was observed between the third and fourth decades, peaking in the third and in good agreement with that previously published (45·2%), and significantly more females complained of DH than males (SND=2·24, 95% CI 0·01734–0·2661). Cold was perceived as the most common cause of DH, in agreement with other studies. Only 12·6% of patients reported periodontal surgery compared to 15·5% previously. Of those who received hygiene therapy (67·9%) only 15·5% reported DH following treatment which mainly did not last ≥5 days. Most patients with DH did not perceive the condition as severe and did not seek treatment (75·1%). Only 23·3% used a desensitizing dentifrice. The results indicated that self-reporting of DH is lower than reported in a dental hospital population and was not perceived as a major dental problem by most patients in a general dental practice population.