Tag: insurance dentist

Insurance Questions

I will try to answer questions from my patients as they arise.  Today I want to answer one of the most common ones:  Why are you not “in network” with my insurance?

The answer goes back several years to the point when I had to make a decision: What type of dentistry did I want to provide to my patients?  Well, about 10 years ago I chose to provide only the type of dentistry to my patients that I would accept for my myself or my family.  It was not an easy decision.  Providing top quality dentistry comes with its own challenges.

First, you must have the skills and education to provide that type of dentistry.

Second, insurance companies are in the business to “not” provide dental benefits.  If every insurance company paid for dentistry on their members then they would be broke (or are they already – AIG?).  Seriously though, insurance companies try to pay as little for as little as possible.

So, 10 years ago I became an “out of network” provider for all insurance companies for the benefit of my patients.  It was a tough move at first, but my practice grew tremendously because I focused on my patients and their needs instead of what the insurance would cover.  Over the past 10 years I have been following my patients and am now able to point out a few tremendous benefits of top quality dentistry:

  1. LESS Emergencies – Yes, I have nearly zero emergencies with my patients!  A thorough new patient exam coupled with a complete exam annually virtually eliminated emergencies for my existing patients!  What a great benefit.  All my patients know exactly where they stand with their oral health.  Everything is outlined after their consultation.  There are no surprises.
  2. LESS Root Canal Treatments – Yes, I do very few root canal treatments on exiting patients!  Root canal treatments are due to accidents, severe decay or poor dentistry.  Accidents are accidents and will happen.  Severe decay should never happen as a dentist needs to find the initial warning signs way before it gets that bad.  And poor dentistry, well, that we just don’t have here.  That being said, I think it is very sad to see holes in crowns (caps) that were placed by other dentists.  This usually means the cap was cemented and required a root canal treatment afterwards.  I can’t remember the last time I had to do a root canal on a tooth after cementing the final crown.
  3.  LESS Dentistry– The best benefit of all, top quality dentistry and meticulous exams result in less dentistry over the patient’s lifetime.  I address dental problems when they just begin to appear, hopefully preventing the need for more invasive dentistry down the line.  Quality dentistry lasts longer, fits better and functions correctly.  This is not as common as you might think.  These factor together result in less visits to the dentist, less redoes, less pain.  You actually will save money in the long run by choosing top quality dentistry!  Not to mention the increased comfort, better function and beautiful aesthetics.

The difference between exceptional dentistry and average dentistry, financially, at first, is not as much as you might think.  Most insurance companies will pay towards dental treatment even if you are out of network.  Even if you are in network, they might reduce your benefit to something smaller and make you fight for your money.  It is a game they play.  With a practice like mine we exclusively focus on you and your needs.  As a benefit to you we will file your insurance information and fight to get you your benefits, but we will never have a dental insurance company tell us what we can and can’t do for you! 

The ONLY reason I am not in network with insurance companies is to be able to provide quality care for my patients.  Period.

I hope this helps.  Most of the patients in my practice understand this answer perfectly and would not go anywhere else regardless of insurance.  I invite you to stop by and see the difference for yourself!

The “COST” of poor/cheap dentistry

Dentistry, just like anything in life, comes in all forms and shapes. It may be easiest to compare dentistry to something we all are familiar with, a roof.

So lets look at this roof. There are a few leaks, cracks, and mold is building up inside from the moisture. In short, you know you need a new roof. So, you have a few choices. You can get the cheap roof that lasts a few years and then will require another costly replacement, or you can pay a little more, get the best roof and be set, possibly for the rest of your life.

It seems like a pretty simple choice now, but in a few years when the same problems arise, just worse this time, you wonder why you did not fix it right in the first place. Now you have to have someone come fix a mold problem from the continuous leaking. The supporting structure of the roof is also falling apart, adding to the cost of repair.

Your warranty ran out since it was for a short time, and the insurance won’t cover failure in such a short time. In short, you are stuck with a huge time and money consuming issue now. Had you gone with the high quality roof you would have still been insured, under warranty, and not in need for any treatment for a long time. Was the quick fix worth it?  I don’t think so.

Dentistry is similar. There are many ways to “patch” a tooth, but that will only result in much more trouble down the line. I see it everyday. The key is to prevent decay and rebuild teeth naturally whenever possible. Should you need any type of dentistry, fixing it right is priceless. You only have 32 teeth for your entire life.

Even perfect teeth without cavities at a normal rate of wear will need serious rebuilding after 55 years! Who want to worry about that when they are just about to retire? Now imagine what old dentistry, stress, grinding and all the other negative factors affecting your teeth will do to them? You are right, teeth take a beating and will eventually break if not treated right.

Now there is a better way! Top quality dentists can restore your mouth and keep it from breaking down, saving you money, a lot of money, and time in the long run. We all know this to be true, but few people think more than 5 years ahead.

Here at Ideal Dentistry we think ahead for you. It is our job not to just be tooth mechanics but rather mouth doctors. We treat the problems that are causing the breakdown of your teeth, then rebuild them with the best materials and skilled technicians available, and then finally help you manage and keep your teeth healthy for the rest of your life.

So, that is why the cost of poor/cheap dentistry far exceeds the cost of quality dentistry. Where do you stand? How much time and money do you want to spend on your teeth in 10, 20, or even 50 years? That is entirely up to you.