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Old 01-09-2008, 01:04 PM   #21
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If you don't have insurance and are tight for money..try going to a Dental school for your work..Usually you only have to pay for materials and you get the latest techniques and very through care. Thats what I did when my son needed braces years ago..think I only paid about $2000.(or less) for over 3 years of care.
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Old 01-09-2008, 01:33 PM   #22
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Don't even go there I have terible teethand and bad gums, even cleaning I have to do every 3 month...
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Old 01-09-2008, 03:21 PM   #23
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My son and d-i-l did just what you suggested, Sage, as they don't have insurance and were quite happy with the dental school. As long as you don't have an immediate emergency (it does take awhile to get an apptmt.) they got very good care and everything was supervised..........


By way, I do like my dentist's office---everyone is very friendly and he has chairs with massagers, and they offer warm neck wraps as well.......he just was having a bad day with me constantly closing my mouth on him and was afraid he'd damage the cracked tooth....after he realized that TMJ syndrome was involved he was far more understanding on the next trip....no, I wouldn't trade my dentist for anyone and he's 35ish young so he'll hopefully be around for a long time........Ha!
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Old 01-09-2008, 03:31 PM   #24
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In general I don't mind the dentists, it's generally the snotty staff that look at you like you're green when you tell them "You told me it would be $X and that's all I have, bill me for the rest." I have this theory, if the mechanic with the high school education knows enough to not work on my car without my approval on the repairs, why don't the college educated dentists? AND why should I pay for optional services they've done without telling me knowing insurance won't cover them? They did some "pulp cap" on my daughter and didn't warn me, didn't ask me, just did it and the insurance didn't cover it. How is that MY fault?
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Old 01-09-2008, 04:33 PM   #25
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Well, first things first. The best way to select a dentist , as with many other things , is by recommendations from a friend, relative or someone who u know and trust, Not by 1-800 -dentist ( a paid service by dentists, about $2000 a month) or from and insurance list ( dentist willing to sign on to a plan and receive crappy prices in exchange for volume of patients. Sure, you can coordinate the two. When I have had patients whose insurance changed, and they were no longer willing to come to our practice, I told them to bring in the insurance list and I would see if there was anyone that i would, or more importantly wouldnt recommend for them to see.

As far as dentists continuously hurting people ( their patients) , remember , a tooth is alive , and so is he patient. Therefore, it is a surgery that is being performed which, in other medical fields, you are often under sedation while the procedure is being performed. Now, including my office, sedation is offered, and sure, for an extra fee, you can be ' knocked out' while we perform all procedures, including the ' poking with a sharp instrument' ' scraping and scaling' along with everything else.

As far as the procedures being performed without telling in advance, sure , that doesnt make sense in most cases. Sure, we are selling our services, and you should be aware of what is being done ahead of time, and what the insurance is ' expected ' to pay, although, without sending things in for pre-approval, it is impossible to guarantee that the service will be covered, and also, the maximum of your benefits must be considered as well. On the other hand, there are some procedures that may not be predictable, in the case of the ' pulp cap' When a deep filling is performed , we know it is deep, but have no idea exactly how close it is to the nerve until the procedure is underway. Once the nerve is exposed, doesnt leave too many options Pulp cap or extraction. SO even if the initial intent was to do do a filling, if the cavity was too deep, gotta do what you gotta do. I know I will tell my patients that the filling is deep ahead of time, and there is risk of nerve exposure and what the options are if that happens. Often the patient will say ' just put a filling in it' and that they dont want the root canal. But, this isnt a realistic option. All the decay must be removed. If not, there will be nerve involvement anyway. So better do it at a predictable time, then wait for the unexpected thanks giving, christmas , new years ... toothache, when no one is open, and your stuck waiting in the emergency room for 4 hours just to get some antibiotics, pain meds and possible a shot of anesthetic.

Finally, although not all cases, many reasons people come to the dentist only when they have a toothache, so a simple problem that may have existed a few years ago, now is a root canal or extraction. Sure, much of this happens due to bad experiences. And I know there are phobia's. But the truth is, coming the 2 times a year for the check up, x-rays and cleaning will save a lot of money, and a lot of fearful, painful visits. A filling is about $150 +/- , if neglected, 1 or 2 years later, it is a Root canal, post and crown which is about $1500.

People have no problems bringing their cars in for the oil changes, replacing brakes and tires to service everyday wear and tear. Remember that we eat several times a day, every day. Years ago, average age of humans was 30 -40. now its about 70 - 80 , so we are asking a lot from our teeth. Need to maintain them, just as we do our cars. Sure it is uncomfortable, sometimes painful, and fearful. Sure, there are a bunch of quacks out there. My suggestion is, as mentioned earlier, find out from someone who u trust, who they use. Go for a consult first. Ask for a tour of the office or to meet the staff. Check for cleanliness. Bring a list of questions. Hopefully this will bring better experiences .

Hey, I did this all on my day off!!!!! How about we talk some food :) I like that topic better .
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Old 01-09-2008, 06:36 PM   #26
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Thanks Larry, you sure made a lot of sense. I happen to love my Dentist- because he has never hurt me !! He is also up on everything new, just a great guy. I used to be so afraid - no more - he knows how to give novocain !! Correctly !!! God Bless good Dentist !!
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Old 01-09-2008, 07:20 PM   #27
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Well, to be perfectly honest, My graduating class was about 110 dentists, and realistically, i would only trust about 5 of them to do work on me :)

And when I go to the doctors office, I always pay attention to how im treated there, from the very first phone call, to the front desk, to the nurse who walks me back ..... and i compare it to how my staff treats our patients. It amazes me how rude, uncaring, unfriendly the staff could be sometimes. It is situations like that which make me appreciate my staff even more.

Also, about telling the dentist you hate them or things like that, dont worry. I hear it at least once a day, probably even more. The second most popular complaint is the sound of the drill, then the taste of the anesthesia..... the list goes on and on. Its just part of the job. I never get offended.
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Old 01-09-2008, 07:57 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by larry_stewart View Post
Well, to be perfectly honest, My graduating class was about 110 dentists, and realistically, i would only trust about 5 of them to do work on me :)

And when I go to the doctors office, I always pay attention to how im treated there, from the very first phone call, to the front desk, to the nurse who walks me back ..... and i compare it to how my staff treats our patients. It amazes me how rude, uncaring, unfriendly the staff could be sometimes. It is situations like that which make me appreciate my staff even more.

Also, about telling the dentist you hate them or things like that, dont worry. I hear it at least once a day, probably even more. The second most popular complaint is the sound of the drill, then the taste of the anesthesia..... the list goes on and on. Its just part of the job. I never get offended.
Larry, I have never had a problem with a dentist I had to get quite a bit of work when I was older due to to neglect as a child.Im glad they do what they do. Americans have the best teeth in the world and I have always wanted my teeth to stay nice I was lucky my teeth grew in straight and and the work I had done was could have been worse except I was lucky to have good teeth to begin with.But I hafto say I dont care for a dentist that doesn't take the time to get the novacaine in carefully, as long as Im numb you can do what you want as I would like to keep my teeth as long as possible. Dentists can perform miracles in my eyes I've seen what they can do on tv totally amazing.All I wish is that I had a dentist as a relative and a lawyer and a CPA and a doctor and a and a
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Old 01-09-2008, 08:04 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by larry_stewart View Post
As far as the procedures being performed without telling in advance, sure , that doesnt make sense in most cases. Sure, we are selling our services, and you should be aware of what is being done ahead of time, and what the insurance is ' expected ' to pay, although, without sending things in for pre-approval, it is impossible to guarantee that the service will be covered, and also, the maximum of your benefits must be considered as well. On the other hand, there are some procedures that may not be predictable, in the case of the ' pulp cap' When a deep filling is performed , we know it is deep, but have no idea exactly how close it is to the nerve until the procedure is underway. Once the nerve is exposed, doesnt leave too many options Pulp cap or extraction. SO even if the initial intent was to do do a filling, if the cavity was too deep, gotta do what you gotta do. I know I will tell my patients that the filling is deep ahead of time, and there is risk of nerve exposure and what the options are if that happens. Often the patient will say ' just put a filling in it' and that they dont want the root canal. But, this isnt a realistic option. All the decay must be removed. If not, there will be nerve involvement anyway. So better do it at a predictable time, then wait for the unexpected thanks giving, christmas , new years ... toothache, when no one is open, and your stuck waiting in the emergency room for 4 hours just to get some antibiotics, pain meds and possible a shot of anesthetic.
Regarding this in general.....in all fairness if you have a patient that says "what is it going to cost? I NEED to know before I come because I only have enough to cover what you tell me in advance, I need to know exactly" (I was very, very clear I was bringing cash and funds were tight) and THEN to be told "well, we did this without telling you before hand, it'll be an additional $50" and for them to give me attitude is just unacceptable. They were told 3 times before the appointment that I would only have the amount they told me. They knew the score. Then they gave me attitude because I brought what they told me to and they didn't bother to warn me there could be additional charges or even ask me what I wanted. Truth be told, with my insurance the root canal would have been cheaper because they pay for those but not pulp caps. Oh, and never tell a dental office person that "even a mechanic tells you what they are doing before expecting payment for addition work." It doesn't fly well.

Now about that "sell our services" comment. If y'all "sell your services" why can't I get the teeth up front fixed first and use my insurance for the front teeth that others see and would help my self esteem? Why do I have to do things in their order? It's my mouth, my money. My back tooth has been a stump for years, fix the front one that just broke so it doesn't get worse and I can smile without lowering my head. Why is that? Why can't I get what I want fixed? Huh? I'm curious!!
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Old 01-09-2008, 08:14 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Callisto in NC View Post
Regarding this in general.....in all fairness if you have a patient that says "what is it going to cost? I NEED to know before I come because I only have enough to cover what you tell me in advance, I need to know exactly" (I was very, very clear I was bringing cash and funds were tight) and THEN to be told "well, we did this without telling you before hand, it'll be an additional $50" and for them to give me attitude is just unacceptable. They were told 3 times before the appointment that I would only have the amount they told me. They knew the score. Then they gave me attitude because I brought what they told me to and they didn't bother to warn me there could be additional charges or even ask me what I wanted. Truth be told, with my insurance the root canal would have been cheaper because they pay for those but not pulp caps. Oh, and never tell a dental office person that "even a mechanic tells you what they are doing before expecting payment for addition work." It doesn't fly well.

Now about that "sell our services" comment. If y'all "sell your services" why can't I get the teeth up front fixed first and use my insurance for the front teeth that others see and would help my self esteem? Why do I have to do things in their order? It's my mouth, my money. My back tooth has been a stump for years, fix the front one that just broke so it doesn't get worse and I can smile without lowering my head. Why is that? Why can't I get what I want fixed? Huh? I'm curious!!
I think thats because the dentist wants to address the more worse tooth first the back teeth need it because more bacteria is back there and it gets worse quick the front teeth are cosmetic unless its another issue. You really dont want to lose any of your back or side teeth if you do then you get a domino effect where all your teeth start falling sideways as the missing tooth is not there to hold the all the other teeth together.
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