I have been lucky, blessed with a good set of teeth since childhood. I grew up poor so, I was not able to eat tons of candies and sweet nothings when I was younger. I always had ample serving of green mangoes fresh from a tree, hard guavas, sugarcane trunks stolen from the field in my barrio, fresh vegetables from our backyard garden. In short, by eating non-sugary foods, I am able to preserve my teeth.
Very recently, however, my teeth are giving me some trouble. Two years ago, I cracked my tooth (molar) while on a Spain trip. I suffered for a while, but since, I am a Filipino, I am stoic and can handle pain better than others. My threshold for pain is something to be desired.
As soon, as I arrived in the USA, I went straight to the dentist. He was adamant to pull the cracked tooth and wants to refer me to a dental surgeon. I practically pulled his arm to remove my tooth at that time, my rationale, why refer when he can do it himself as he is also a dentist. That is double whammy to my insurance coverage! To make the long story short, he pulled it.
Two months ago, I visited the same dentist for a tooth problem with swollen gums. The hygienist said, still looks good but will need frequent cleaning and flossing. The dentist thought otherwise, he wants to refer me to a gum specialist for tooth removal and replacement with porcelain worth $ 3,000.00 dollars. The price brought some shock waves to my spine. I composed myself and agreed to go to the specialist, nonetheless, at the back of my mind, I was rebelling!!
So I went to the specialist who took some special Xrays with special gadgets and the like. He placed the result in front of me. I did not tell him which specific tooth was to be removed. Guess what, he went to the xray result back and forth about three times because, he could not tell which is the diseased tooth! I have to literally point out to him which one..obviously the tooth is not that bad. I just kept quiet and went along for the ride. He said, I need to have that tooth removed so that they can replace it with an implant. A porcelain would cost total of $ 3,000.00. I mentioned, I will think about it and will call him for further orders. He said, I should not wait long because, it will give me a lot of issues..I should go back to him in 2 months.
That was two months ago, I still have the tooth. True, it gives me minute pain once in a while especially when I do not clean it thoroughly, but on the whole the tooth is still viable. It could still last me until I am 98 years old, as long as I go to the hygienist often.
In this story, only the hygienist was telling the truth. She is only salaried and has no ulterior motive to fleece my insurance coverage, while the two dentists are in connivance to fleece my insurance.
My hubby has very bad dentition. He goes to those dentists so often that he must have already paid for their new office furniture and equipments. As for my diseased tooth, I will just continue using my electric toothbrush with religious flossing so it will last me a lifetime. I do not want to pay $3000.00 dollars for a single porcelain tooth, much less, have a new atificial tooth.
Some dentists will not tell you preventative measures to preserve your teeth. If they do, they will have no more clients.