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    Old 05-21-2009, 12:57 PM   #1
    annG45
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    Dentists and the Upsell

    I'm not sure my dentist is doing so well these days. It seems like every time I go in I'm in the waiting room by myself. He also told me today he thinks I should get a new set of X rays, even though I just had some six months ago. He also said it's possible we should consider removing a wisdom tooth that doesn't cause me any pain that I've had for years. (In the past he used to say it was so far down in my mouth removing it could be hazardous.)

    So, my question: Is anybody else having these sorts of problems these days? How do you know when your dentist is giving you an upsell? AND, how do I know if I should get a second opinion? (Keep in mind, I'm loathe to leave work for long stretches these days if I don't absolutely have to!)

    Thanks,
    Angela

     
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    Old 05-21-2009, 03:49 PM   #2
    EllieFrog
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    Re: Dentists and the Upsell

    You do NOT need to have x-rays done every six months. You only need to do them every year, and not all teeth. Do not let him sucker you into getting your x-rays done every 6 months. That is hazardous to your health. That much exposure to the radiation is extremely unhealthy. I really hate it how dentists and their assistants use the little cover to cover your body from the radiation, yet the stupid thing does NOT cover one of the most important glands in your body - the thyroid. This extremely important/sensitive gland is exposed to all the radiation and they don't even care because they get to leave them room.
    I learned all the potential dangers from my genetics professor... it's horrifying. Every time you get those x-rays done make sure you pull the cover thing over your throat. Doing that many x-rays in general is unnecessary, costly, and dangerous.

    Do NOT let him yank out your teeth if you don't have to. Having your wisdom teeth removed is such an unnecessary surgery if they are intact. I am 23 years old and based on my genes and the fact that I do not have grown wisdom teeth pretty much tells me that I will never have them (as in they will never grow out). If my dentist did as much to suggest that they should be removed I would have looked for a different dentist right away. Unless the wisdom teeth are interfering with the rest they do NOT need to be taken out. Don't let them tell you otherwise... you are the one paying for the expensive procedures.

    I really have no idea when dentists are telling the truth. I went to my dentist and had all my previous (3) fillings removed and had 4 other filled... plus a root canal and to this day I do NOT believe that I had that many cavities all at once. I just told him that I hadn't been to a dentist in a few years and that is probably why he suckered me into all the procedures. I wish so bad that I went elsewhere and asked for a second opinion, but I didn't think that I could afford getting another set of x-rays done... and I know that if I asked for them to be sent to another dentist it would be a whole long process.

    Your dentist already sounds like he's pushing to get you to do unnecessary procedures. If I were in your place I would go elsewhere. Get a different dentist and see if his opinions agree with your current dentists; chances are they will not. It's really sad that they have so much power and you can never tell whether or not they're telling the truth... dental procedures are extremely expensive.

     
    Old 05-21-2009, 05:55 PM   #3
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    Re: Dentists and the Upsell

    I went to the dentist who insisted on doing full mouth xrays even though I've maxed out my benefits for this year already. I said no because I didn't want to pay for them. One of the office workers called the insurance company and came back and said that every 5 years insurance pays for full mouth xrays and that insurance would pay. So I got the xrays done that day.

    Was I exposed to radiation if the xrays were done with some type of sensor used and the pictures went straight to a computer, no developing film?

    Anyways, I got my notice explanation of benefits and they denied paying for the full mouth xrays. Well, I will have a talk with the dentist office because I'm not paying for this as they said it was approved.

     
    Old 05-22-2009, 12:02 AM   #4
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    Re: Dentists and the Upsell

    For all three of you, I would suggest a few things:
    1) If you do not understand why the dentist suggests something, ASK. Ask them to show you the xray, or photo of the problem. If the answer makes sense, great. If not, get a second opinion...consults are cheap compared to everything else.

    2) Many dentists now have lead aprons with thyroid collars for that very reason, Ellie. Ask your dentist if they have one, or find one who does.

    3) Digital xrays produce about 80% less radiation than conventional film. If looking for a new dentist and you are worried about exposure, find a dentist with digital systems. Taape, the direct xray sensors need the least amount of radiation.

    4) Timing - typically bitewing flims are taking every 6 months, this is a series of 4 films. This is because a cavities can develop within a matter of months, and finding decay before it spreads too far reduces the need for more complex treatment....its preventive care. Full mouth xrays or panoramics are only needed every few years or on new patients (to that office).

    5) Most importantly, use preventive care whenever possible, and don't skip it! Dentists tend to do slightly better in a poor economy because patients skip their hygiene appts. to save money and come in later with more extensive needs that end up costing the patient more. Investing a little money in an ultrasonic toothbrush can save you tons of money in the long run (assuming you use it).

     
    Old 05-22-2009, 06:49 AM   #5
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    Re: Dentists and the Upsell

    Just a suggestion but I always ask for copies of my films - especially full mouth or panoramic (ie, panarex or panagrams) - some dentists charge a nominal fee for this which btw particulary bothers me if they were not covered by insurance and I paid for them - if they are digital though they can easily be put on a disc and so far no one has charge me for this type - but this eliminates the need for add'l x-rays when going for consults, shopping for a new dentist or starting with a new one. They also help show the progression of one's dental history over time.

     
    Old 05-22-2009, 08:33 AM   #6
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    Re: Dentists and the Upsell

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Stribe View Post
    4) Timing - typically bitewing flims are taking every 6 months, this is a series of 4 films. This is because a cavities can develop within a matter of months, and finding decay before it spreads too far reduces the need for more complex treatment....its preventive care.
    Hmmm, my dentist only does bite wings every two years for me. But I tend not to have many cavities, and they tend to be slow growing when they do occur.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Stribe View Post
    Dentists tend to do slightly better in a poor economy because patients skip their hygiene appts. to save money and come in later with more extensive needs that end up costing the patient more.
    Would it be more accurate to say that dentists' business drops off during a poor economy due to people skipping preventive care, but a rebound to an above normal amount of fillings and such occurs during the economic recovery?

    Last edited by tjlhb; 05-22-2009 at 08:36 AM.

     
    Old 05-22-2009, 09:18 AM   #7
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    Re: Dentists and the Upsell

    if you not having any problems with your teeth and theyre not hurting you?
    then it isnt neccessary if the dentist is empy probably a reason for it !!

    go to another dentist i would as it seems strange to be empty all the time you go there?
    also full x-rays not needed every 6months

    seems your dentist seems to be losing patients and needs the money and is trying to get you to pay for treatment you dont need


    trust your instints i wished i had earlier i wouldnt be in mess i am in now !!

     
    Old 05-24-2009, 03:42 AM   #8
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    Re: Dentists and the Upsell

    The UK National Radiological Protection Board says that dentists do not need to use a lead apron unless the main X-ray beam is directed towards the gonads. Any dentist will use one if the patient requests.
    Unless you are very decay prone you do not need bite- wing x-rays more than once every two years.

     
    Old 05-24-2009, 08:35 AM   #9
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    Re: Dentists and the Upsell

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tjlhb View Post
    Would it be more accurate to say that dentists' business drops off during a poor economy due to people skipping preventive care, but a rebound to an above normal amount of fillings and such occurs during the economic recovery?
    There have been several economic reports about all businesses, dentistry was one of the highlights because it showed a minor growth while everyone else declined.

    To answer your question, it depends on what you are discussing. Cosmetic dentistry shows a decline during recessions because its usually completely elective. However, the fillings and crown rate tends to go up because people do not invest in their preventive care as much, and it comes back to bite them later when the teeth start to hurt. Now, with just minor fillings, you are probably completely right, since they don't cause pain, patients will hold off on them for months.

     
    Old 05-25-2009, 12:45 PM   #10
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    Re: Dentists and the Upsell

    Quote:
    2) Many dentists now have lead aprons with thyroid collars for that very reason, Ellie. Ask your dentist if they have one, or find one who does.
    Haha, that's funny. If they have them than why don't they use them? What is the point of exposing people to so much radiation if they can prevent it? I shouldn't have to ask; the dentist should care about his/her patients enough to use the proper "aprons" without being asked. I don't think that I should have to "shop around" for dentists solely based on whether or not they have the appropriate protection.

     
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