Most of my teeth are missing. In hopes of receiving affordable dental implants, I signed up for a discount dental plan. During my first appointment, I filled out paperwork, but noticed the forms were asking for more information than is typically on medical office paperwork. After completing the paperwork, I was told that I qualified for financing. I found it odd that they would qualify me for financing before any services or prognoses were completed. I received an x-ray and dental cleaning. Then, the dentist entered the room and told me I needed several fillings and multiple crowns, without physically looking at any of my teeth and that all of the work would come to the tune of $4000. I thought that amount sounded extreme, and was still in shock at the entire process. The receptionist tried to get me to commit to an appointment date and time for the crowns and fillings, but, because I felt uneasy about the whole thing, I told her I would call later for this. However, I have zero intention of returning to that dental office. If I do, in fact, need all of the dental work they indicated I do, it will be several years before I can afford the work to be done. I recently received a phone call from that office to schedule my appointment for the dental work. I have no intention of returning the call. I know I have not been intentional about my dental appointments or hygiene, so realize it is possible that I may have a few cavities, but is it normal, or even permissible, for a dentist to advise that you have all of this work done without physically looking at your teeth?
You are correct. What you experienced during your dental appointment is far from normal. Not only should you have received your cleaning and x-rays, your teeth should have been thoroughly examined by the dentist before any treatment was recommended. Then, in addition to recommending the treatment, the dentist should have explained why such treatment was necessary. High fees, such as the amount you were quoted, can make a person feel that affordable dental implants are out of their reach.
Your decision to not return to that office was a wise one. You might also consider reaching out to your dental insurance provider, in order to explain the situation and avoid any potential problems with coverage, since you will likely be duplicating the appointment with a different dentist. You may also want to visit any future dental offices first, or request a dental consultation, before any exams.
Affordable dental implants are possible because of financing and/or dental payment plans, but they should never be sneaky or secretive, as you have experienced.
This post is sponsored by Baton Rouge dentist Dr. Ryan Perry.