I went to this dentist I really liked for years, but last year, he had a stroke and had to sell his business to another dentist. I make an appointment with the new dentist – after they lied to me and told me they accepted my insurance, when they did not take any insurance at all. The dentist informed me that I needed the deep-scale cleaning and had six cavities/fillings needing repair. For a small fee of $1800. I looked at that dentist and said, “So you’re telling me that Dr. [my previous dentist] is such a terrible dentist that he never noticed peridontal disease, and he never noticed that all these filings need re-done, even though I saw him every 4 months for three years He missed all that?” He changed the subject and I stalked out in a huff.
I found a new dentist, who does take my insurance. She started doing the charting for the peridontal disease and I started laughing. She asked why. I told her that the shyster dentist had told me the numbers were all 5s and 6s. I couldn’t see how that could be true because I’d been keeping up with gum maintenance. She was calling out 1s, 2s, and 3s. She also said there was only one filling that needed repair and a tiny little pit we could take care of at the same time, but it wasn’t even a cavity yet. She also complimented me on taking such good care of my teeth.
So I think you have to be extremely careful about dentists. Some of them are money-grubbing con artists and some of them are legitimately good dentists who actually care. I don’t think dentistry in and of itself is a racket, nor do think dental insurance is a racket. The insurance has saved me thousands of out-of-pocket dollars over the years. However, a dental practice can be set up in a way that, depending on the ethics and standards of the dentist, makes it a hella lucrative racket.
I’m really, really glad I walked out of the first dentist’s office. On the intake forms, they list a bunch of really expensive procedures, such as pulling all your teeth and giving you dentures :eek:, and you have to sign off that you agree to undergo any of those procedures if the dentist says you need them. Aw, hell no. I’m not giving you permission to pull healthy teeth just because you feel like it. I refused to sign that paper. That dentist can suck my tiny little girly balls.