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Old 09-30-2019, 07:03 PM
 
2,410 posts, read 5,134,921 times
Reputation: 1888

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Quote:
Originally Posted by reneeh63 View Post
Interesting that you should mention this. At my last cleaning the hygienist asked if I had any problem areas, pain etc. as they usually do and I told her about some sensitivity I'd recently started having. She poked at it a bit and said I should probably use something like Sensodyne...she did mention that it was too soon for xrays. My impression was that xrays would be covered if they were based on some possible issue that needed to be diagnosed. But okay, fine, no problem - I took the Sensodyne. But what was unusual, and I didn't think about it until later was that the dentist didn't come in at all at the end!

As it turns out, I was back in the office about a month later because the tooth got steadily worse - turns out it was absessing so needed some major work. I did tell him what the hygienist said so he knew I'd been recently seen in their office.

So the whole thing was strange and I'll definitely be paying attention next time - because i really like my dentist and this was a new hygienist. I may try to get someone different next time.
My experience has always been a cleaning and exam, never just a cleaning app't. The dentist is supposed to do the exam, and they are billed as two separate items. Did you see two line items on your bill with different charges (cleaning and exam)? Even if you have insurance, you should always get a statement of services with the prices at the end of each app't so you know where you stand.
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Old 09-30-2019, 07:05 PM
 
2,410 posts, read 5,134,921 times
Reputation: 1888
Quote:
Originally Posted by PriscillaVanilla View Post
I've been reading reviews of local dentists and when I see lots of patient reviews where they complain about unnecessary procedures and recommendations, I avoid those dentists. Some dentist are making so much money that they're only working 2 days a week now. This should be a huge red flag.
A lot of dental practices these days see patients as ATM machines. And yes, some dentists only work a few days a week. Definitely a flag if they are only there 2 days a week.
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Old 09-30-2019, 07:47 PM
 
10,012 posts, read 17,147,801 times
Reputation: 17074
I've had just the opposite experience. I've gone to the same dentist for ten years, so, obviously I've been overall pleased with his services. However, I was sometimes puzzled that he didn't pursue what seemed like needed/justifiable treatments. He does some procedures, but seemed to shy away from others, saying oh, we'll just keep an eye on it. Well, I thought at least he's not trying to grab every nickel he can


Then we received an email stating he would no longer be an in-network provider with our insurance. He would still accept our insurance, but would charge as an out-of-network provider. He stated that he was taking a loss with our insurance, their reimbursement many times didn't even cover their costs, and, as an in-network provider he couldn't charge the patient the difference.


Ok, I do understand his business decision, but to think our care may have been compromised due to our insurance reimbursement! We would have been better off not paying for the insurance at all, and applied what we paid in insurance premiums towards our bill, and used CareCredit! To think we were paying insurance premiums that actually cut us out of certain dental procedures! Before you say get another dental insurance, that was through my dh employer, and they only offer one choice.


So, like I said, I do understand and respect his business decision. He's not running a charity! He did inform us that he will no longer be in-network with our insurance in a timely manner to give us time to decide if we wish to continue with that insurance before enrollment ends. Might as well, since that's the only insurance option we have through the employer.


Now, who do we see for a dentist? There's not a dentist in town who's in-network with that plan, so we'd be out-of-network wherever we'd go. We might as well stay with him. Our whole family has gone there for ten years, we like him and his staff, they do good work (when it suits them financially). Now, it remains to be seen if he starts doing all the stuff he's been "keeping an eye on", and what he charges for out-of-network. Much as I like this guy, I might need to shop around for prices.

To think insurance actually can price a patient out of care!

Who knew?
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Old 09-30-2019, 09:19 PM
 
Location: Texas
13,497 posts, read 5,754,917 times
Reputation: 25940
Quote:
Originally Posted by xz2y View Post
A lot of dental practices these days see patients as ATM machines. .
My dental hygienist would check my insurance coverage right when I sat down in the chair. The times that I visited the dentist with no insurance, were the visits where they told me nothing was wrong with my teeth. I started noticing these things and it dawned on me they were just using me as an ATM machine.
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Old 10-01-2019, 09:54 PM
 
10,012 posts, read 17,147,801 times
Reputation: 17074
I used to avoid the dentist in the past because those 2x year "free" cleaning and exams ended up costing me an arm and a leg by the time they got through fixing everything they found "wrong" during their "free" exam. It was like I couldn't afford the "free" exam!


The dentist I now have didn't seem to be so eager to find things wrong, but, read my above post. My insurance made certain procedures a financial loss and he wasn't allowed to charge me the difference because he was in network!


I'm so frustrated with the whole system! Maybe I should go to Mexico for dental care? I wonder what kinds of scams they run there? At least I've heard its cheaper overall!
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Old 10-03-2019, 06:25 PM
 
2,410 posts, read 5,134,921 times
Reputation: 1888
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryleeII View Post
I've had just the opposite experience. I've gone to the same dentist for ten years, so, obviously I've been overall pleased with his services. However, I was sometimes puzzled that he didn't pursue what seemed like needed/justifiable treatments. He does some procedures, but seemed to shy away from others, saying oh, we'll just keep an eye on it. Well, I thought at least he's not trying to grab every nickel he can


Then we received an email stating he would no longer be an in-network provider with our insurance. He would still accept our insurance, but would charge as an out-of-network provider. He stated that he was taking a loss with our insurance, their reimbursement many times didn't even cover their costs, and, as an in-network provider he couldn't charge the patient the difference.


Ok, I do understand his business decision, but to think our care may have been compromised due to our insurance reimbursement! We would have been better off not paying for the insurance at all, and applied what we paid in insurance premiums towards our bill, and used CareCredit! To think we were paying insurance premiums that actually cut us out of certain dental procedures! Before you say get another dental insurance, that was through my dh employer, and they only offer one choice.


So, like I said, I do understand and respect his business decision. He's not running a charity! He did inform us that he will no longer be in-network with our insurance in a timely manner to give us time to decide if we wish to continue with that insurance before enrollment ends. Might as well, since that's the only insurance option we have through the employer.


Now, who do we see for a dentist? There's not a dentist in town who's in-network with that plan, so we'd be out-of-network wherever we'd go. We might as well stay with him. Our whole family has gone there for ten years, we like him and his staff, they do good work (when it suits them financially). Now, it remains to be seen if he starts doing all the stuff he's been "keeping an eye on", and what he charges for out-of-network. Much as I like this guy, I might need to shop around for prices.

To think insurance actually can price a patient out of care!

Who knew?
Very frustrating. Dental insurance is not very comprehensive or good, in my experience. Before I retired, I worked for a large company with excellent benefits, but the dental coverage was paltry. A $1,000 benefit each year? That benefit didn't change in 10 years! But the cost of those procedures went up a lot in 10 years, so you are paying more and more out of pocket.

I had the same situation when I worked in terms of dental ins and in-network dentists. Very few to pick from and not very good ones. I ended up with an out of network dentist while I was working and it was better than nothing in terms of coverage.

Dentists charge A LOT for their procedures. And most work independently, so there isn't any other dentist (peer) around in the practice (unless it's a multi-dentist practice) and no one looking over your shoulder. I don't trust a lot of them.

I went to one guy who did x-rays and said I needed to remove 2 old crowns and have them redone because of "problems." I never saw the x-rays. I changed dentists 6 months later, got new x-rays, and there was no issue with those 2 old crowns. It's a crap shoot, unless you have a reliable recommendation from a friend or family member, but even then, things can go south quickly.

I'm retired and on medicare so I pay out of pocket for all dental work, and if I'm in doubt, I'll get a second opinion before spending thousands on unnecessary work.
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