Insurance Plan Dentists: Choosing a Dentist

Retail dental officeMany patients look for a dentist on their insurance plan. Patients are looking to decrease their out-of-pocket expenses. This makes sense. However, when you are choosing a dental office with a “cute” name, are you truly choosing a dentist, or are you choosing a retail or corporate entity? What does it matter?

The delivery of dental care has changed immensely over the past 30 years in which I have practiced dentistry. There used to be a time when a dentist would put his/her name on a “shingle,” an old-school saying, and hang it over or near their door. There was often a humble pride associated with naming a dental office with your name. But that is not the case anymore.

More and more dentists are choosing to select a “cute” name for  their practices. Many retail or corporate entities are also choosing cute names for their practices. I can see billboards along major highways selling sexiness to market a dental office or chain. We have seen dental offices marketing spa services or possibly even tanning booths. What happened to focusing on the practicing dentist? Does that matter anymore? Should it matter anymore?

You have one set of natural teeth as an adult. Do you truly want to entrust your teeth to the lowest cost option, who is within a dental insurance network? Do you truly want to entrust your teeth to a dental office focusing more on selling sexiness, spa services, cosmetic facial procedures, or offering tanning booths?

Perhaps I digressed.  In looking for a dentist on your insurance plan, who is the dentist? Does the dentist own the practice or is the dentist an employee? If the dentist is an employee or an independent contractor, is the dentist paid a commission on dental sales or on dental procedures accomplished? Does the dentist have incentives to perhaps be a bit aggressive in diagnosing or selling dental services? Is the dentist pressured by an upper layer of management to produce more dentistry if the practice is owned by a retail or corporate entity? How long has the dentist been working at the dental office? Are there online reviews of the practicing dentist within the office, or are the reviews for the entire office, making assessing the dentist more difficult? Should this matter to you?

Does any of this matter to you? As an adult, you have one set of teeth. Should you spend as much time selecting a dentist as you would purchasing your next car or picking your next vacation destination?

Perhaps you would be interested in a dentist-owned, patient-centered, value-conscious, quality-oriented traditional dental practice that is focused on you and your dental needs and desires, which can decrease your long-term dental expenses? Perhaps, you would be interested in meeting my team and I? We invite you to call for an appointment at (972) 250-2580.

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