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how your dental dollars are spentFor Mother’s Day this year, I had a special request for a gift.  I love cooking and cook a lot of vegetables, so I appreciate a great knife.  I got an excellent chef’s knife a few years ago and have been diligently sharpening it…poorly.  It has come to the point that I’m not able to get it sharp anymore, so I asked for a new one for Mother’s Day.

I have odd and wide-flung interests and am in a chat group with people that like to talk about cooking and knives.  I asked them which knife to get and got a great recommendation for a beautiful Japanese knife. Being a thoughtful wife, I bought it for myself and told my husband I already had my present!

This knife came in the mail last week, and frankly, I don’t know how I’ve lived my life without it!  People talk about a knife “cutting like it’s butter”, and this one does just that. Now I know how fancy chefs can make such perfect julienne carrots and beautifully sliced tomatoes.  I was marveling at the cucumbers I cut. They were cut so cleanly the cut side shimmered! I know I’m showing my complete nerd side here, but I literally am so excited to go home every night because I GET to cook dinner and use my knife!!

Frugality works sometimes

I am usually quite frugal and frequent thrift stores for clothing, cookware and housewares.  In this case, every penny I spent was worth it. There are some things that are worth paying full price for.

There are some things in dentistry that fall into that category as well.  We often have patients that have come from other offices frustrated or disappointed with the dental care they have received.  Sometimes it is because they have had corners cut in their care, and they are paying for it in lost money, time and health.

 

Dental Guide to Dentistry Worth Paying For…

I’m going to give you an up-front guide to which things in dentistry are worth every penny to get the best:

Dental Exam – This may be a place you’re tempted to save some money, but missed dental problems, and more commonly, missed sources for dental problems, can be very costly in future dental needs.  You may spend years looking for answers in the wrong places.

Dental Fillings– You may want to “wait and see” if you need a filling, particularly if it doesn’t hurt.  Above, is a great picture to show what that may lead to:

  • Cavity between teeth filled when it’s small – $250
  • Deeper cavity that requires a crown or on-lay to restore – $1000-2000
  • Cavity that reaches the nerve must be removed and replaced with an implant – $4500-5000

Dental Implants– these can be confusing.  You might see signs advertising Dental Implants for $995 and think that is a deal too good to miss.  What they don’t tell you is that they are using a cheap Chinese metal implant that will cause reactions in your body. That fee also only covers the implant, not the connector or the crown on the top.  Make sure you are comparing apples to apples. Ask what kind of implant, and if that fee also includes the abutment (connector) and the crown. I would be very suspect of any implant priced at this level.

Tooth Extractions– This is also a procedure that you will find advertised for less.  A tooth can be removed by most any dentist, but that isn’t the end of the story.  The tooth needs to be removed carefully, in order to preserve the bone. After the tooth is removed, the area needs to be cleaned thoroughly and disinfected with ozone.  The socket then needs to be filled with a growth promoting substance that your body will accept. The state-of the art material you want is called PRF – Platelet Rich Fibrin.  These materials come from your own blood and has stem cells and growth factors in it that stimulate your bone to heal. Don’t settle for less, or you may be settling for a dry socket and lingering infection in that area that may affect your body for years to come.dr-jorgensen

Hopefully this gives you some idea of the most important places to spend your dental dollars.  We all need to be careful with our dollars, and this will help you make sure your money is well spent.

Now back to cooking….!

Have a great Spring!
Dr. Michelle Jorgensen

 

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