Most Common Second Opinion: Do I Really Need a “Deep Cleaning?”

We often have patients visit my office for a second opinion. The most common question is something like, “Do I really need a deep cleaning?”

This question is brought up because these patients have never been told this before. They most often went to a dental office because of a coupon, an enticing advertisement, or because the dental office is a “preferred provider” on their dental insurance. They enter these offices with trust; but, they felt in some way pressured to get a “deep cleaning.”

To be honest with you, easily more than half of these second opinion seeking patients do NOT need a deep cleaning. So, what gives? What is going on?

First, dental offices may have varying degrees of conservativeness/aggressiveness in diagnosing dental problems. In my office, I admit to being more conservative. I want my personal medical personnel to be conservative with me, so I provide this for my patients. We do not oversee problems getting worse. Instead, we follow patients to make sure things are not worsening; yet, we want things to improve. We offer advice and we save them money. We also prevent unnecessary dental care from being done.

Second, perhaps the dental office is managed or is owned by an entity that is motivated more so by profits. These offices may have owners or share-holders who expect a certain return on their money. This can pressure the dentists in the office to be more aggressive.

Lastly, perhaps the dentists in the office are not owners. Instead, they may be employees or independent contractors who make most of their money on a commissioned basis. For some, this can cloud their diagnostic judgments to make them more aggressive.

So what are you to do? If you are hearing something surprising that you have never heard from a dentist before, perhaps a second opinion would be in order. I would find a dentist who is more highly rated or ranked online, or I would ask a trusted friend for a referral.

We welcome second opinions in my office. We do not pressure patients to stay with us when seeking their second opinions. Instead, we offer them the freedom to decide. To be honest, most of the time, after experiencing our brand of patient-centeredness, value-consciousness, and quality-orientedness, these patients decide to stay with us. We do save them thousands of dollars over time. We have hundreds of patients who have stayed with us for over 25 years, even with changes to their insurance plans.

I thank you for your interest. I invite you to peruse my website, which is written and produced by me, Dr. Mark Venincasa. We invite you to request an appointment online through this link, or by calling us at (972) 250-2580.

Thank you again.

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