How often is ideal for a dental check up?
Dental check up frequencies need to be individually established. Most adults benefit from an annual check up, however require preventive hygiene appointments every three months in order to maintain the health of the gum tissue (avoiding gum disease). Benefits/Insurance use to suggest every 6 months and more currently suggest every 9 months, HOWEVER don’t confuse what they are willing to pay for and what your unique needs are.
Children benefit generally with every 5 or 6 months simply because there is so much going on within their habits and growth. 9 months is usually too long and too late to care for them in a preventive manner.
Even X-rays to look for cavities ideally are based on the individuals needs. If some-one is more prone to cavities then 5 or 6 months may be recommended. Less prone, then once a year is perfect.
Keep in mind, at a dental check up there is more involved than just a quick look see and cleaning. Similar to a physical at a family doctor, we pride ourselves in caring for you. There is a gum / soft tissue exam. We assess for decay, chipped, worn or fractured teeth. We assess your TMJ and other muscles in the neck, shoulders, head and mouth area. Bite, growth, and development are evaluated. An oral cancer screening is conducted. Blood pressure is checked. Xrays are taken, assessed and diagnosed. Debridement/scaling/ hard tartar is removed. Then for some a polish and or fluoride as needed for the patient.
So the quick answer? If your an adult and not prone to oral health concerns once a year. If you are an adult prone to cavities or other oral issues then a minimum twice a year. If you are a child, young adult then twice a year is most likely in your best interest.
Why have I been recommended for 3 month cleanings?
Dental check ups and dental cleanings are not one in the same. This would surprise most people. IF we recommend you to come every 3 months for a cleaning, this is not a dental check up. This visit will be time with the hygienist to remove any tartar and bacteria that has accumulated within the 3 months. The bacteria and biofilm that causes gum disease can fully regenerate within a three month period, which can effect the integrity of the bone supporting the teeth. This same bacteria travels into the blood stream impacting the oral systemic health connection. 3 month gum care/ periodontal cleaning visits prevent active disease.
If you are wondering if this is covered under your benefits, ask your benefits how many scaling units you have covered. ( not how often you are covered for a check up. )
Do we offer direct billing to benefit/insurance companies?
Now this can be a trick question. Simply because what patients think they are asking and what this question actually means. Yes we submit electronically to your benefit/insurance company IF they will permit. We use a system called ” iTrans” which is the fastest transfer of information. ITrans prides themselves on the level of security that keeps our patients information confidential and secure. Benefit companies can receive patient claims in real time and provide us with a response back usually immediately on what is going to be reimbursed from the dental visit.
What this question does not ask is “Will the dental office get paid from the benefits or does the patient have to pay up front.” What the patient is asking is if we are an assignment office.
The answer to this part is, Since Pipeda rules and restrictions have limited the communication between dental providers and benefit / insurance companies. Most benefit / insurance companies, will only speak with their client / our patient and have established direct deposit for reimbursements to their client / our patients bank account. Therefore, under most circumstances, our patients are reimbursed within 48 hours by their benefit/ insurance company directly into their bank account for the care provided by us. Payment for dental services / care is payable at time of service.
Why are some treatments covered by my benefits/insurance and other not?
Your benefits are a contract established between your employer and the benefit company. What has been established in that contract is what your employer is willing to assist you with or able to pay for in order to compliment your wages. Usually, coverage is based on basic generally required treatment by statistical data. They will determine a dollar maximum per year that they are willing to pay out, using a minimum fee per service. This contract will restrict what you are covered for, HOWEVER the contract cannot establish what care or treatment you actually need.
Your unique needs are based on an assessment done by your dentist. Your treatment required is based on your oral health. Simply, some services are listed in the contract and some are not. Some services are listed, but restricted in one form or another. Some services are newer or categorized differently per contact. Plus, there are multiple fee guides that are being utilized and contracts may be restricted to a specific one.
Note: Limiting your care to what your benefits cover can be hazardous to your health.
How much does it cost for a dental cleaning?
Recare Exam $35 to $60
Scale/Debride/Tartar Removal $ 55.00 and up depending on how much you personally require removed.
A basic cleaning maybe $116 but severe gum therapy with active disease present could be an investment of up to $1200
Preventive dental care is key in maintaining your smile for lifetime.
How much does a filling cost?
Fillings are based on how many surfaces of the tooth has been effected, which tooth/ location in the mouth, the extent of damage, Materials required to repair the tooth, and time to complete the care. Fillings range between $150 and $375 per tooth.
When we assess the area we can provide a more accurate quote.