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What Goes Into the Price Of A Trip To The Dentist

family dental

September 20, 2017

A trip to the dentist, just like a visit to another medical provider, can sometimes end in an unexpected bill to the patient. The patient may leave the office frustrated and confused about the amount charged for the service. “Doesn’t insurance cover this?” and “but I have insurance!” are common questions and phrases we hear at Dansville Dental all the time.

Insurance will usually cover the majority of a service, but when it doesn’t, patients are looking for a simple answer in a complex web of policy, providers, and assumptions. In this article, we’ll answer some questions and explain what exactly goes into the cost of a trip to the dentist.

Insurance Sets The Cost The Patient Pays, Not The Dentist:

What most patients don’t understand is that the dentist rarely sets the price a patient pays for their visit; that price is almost always determined by the insurance company. When an employer sets up a dental insurance plan for their employees, the employer and the insurance company agree on what’s covered and how much insurance will pay based on an estimated cost for dental care set by the insurance. If the insurance company inaccurately estimates a lower price than what the dentist charges, that’s where a patient may end up having to foot a portion of the bill they don’t expect. The amount of money an insurance company will pay towards any visit is predetermined by the level of coverage set by the employer and the insurer. Unlike health and life insurance, dental insurance is more of a financial offset to a dental procedure, rather than a policy that safeguards a patient against potential issues.

Most dentists understand the financial difficulties this places on patients and do their best to help navigate through complex policies to find a proper solution. Many times, insurance companies will recommend less expensive treatment, and while that may solve a financial problem, it is not always the best case for the patient’s dental health. Keep in mind that a dentist’s number one priority is the dental health of a patient. When a dentist recommends a treatment best for health and insurance offers another best for finances, patients often feel caught in the middle.

This leads to a price versus quality discussion. While a patient very well may take the less expensive option presented by insurance, they are sacrificing quality in the treatment by the dentist. In the case of dental insurance, a cheaper price almost always equates with a cheaper treatment, a treatment that is not best suited to the patient’s issue. While we do our best to be sensitive toward price, our mission at Dansville Dental is not to practice cheap dentistry or recommend ineffective treatments to satisfy a financial constraint. We provide the highest quality dental care, and our number one priority is the dental health of the patient.

Number Of Dentists And Hygienists:

A typical dentist office has one dentist and maybe two hygienists; Dansville Dental employs eight doctors and ten hygienists. With such a large staff, we can provide a number of services under one roof and distribute overhead costs. Patients don’t have to worry about getting a referral to an unfamiliar provider and dentist, but instead, can have all the treatment they require done by a dentist they know and trust. We can also see your entire family at one time, whether it be a teeth cleaning, a filling, or an implant, which means less time spent in the waiting room or driving to and from the dentist. Our extended hours are made possible by the number of professional staff we employ and our large building allows us to offer a multitude of services and technology in-house.

Why Choose Dansville Dental Professionals?

We believe the patient always comes first. We go out of our way to care for patients and make sure they receive the quality dental care they need. Our dentists spend many holidays in the office seeing emergency patients; we have doctors on-call all day, 365 days a year.

If you’re interested in learning more, please call 585.335.2201 and we’d happy to answer your questions.