Who is really in charge of your dental care?

3 years ago

Healthy Smiles by Rita Tempel, DDS – This column was originally published in The Gettysburg Times, December 20, 2017

Ask yourself this question:  “Am I really in charge of my dental health?”

Over my 25 years of practice, I have met and worked on thousands of patients. And the majority of patients that I have had the pleasure of meeting have dental insurance.

Unfortunately, over the years, dental insurance is paying for less and less each year—in terms of dollars, benefits and procedures. Which brings me to this extremely important and timely question:  Are you in charge of your dental health or are you allowing a dental insurance company to make your decisions for you?

As we finish 2017, many patients rush to “use their benefits” before the end of the year. Ask yourself, “Why now?” Offices have limited openings with only weeks remaining on the calendar, and they may not be able to treat you. Maybe you found out your insurance is changing from one company or another. Often I hear patients say, “Now I have to find someone who takes my insurance.”

Again, I ask you, “Who is in charge of your dental care?” I would ask you to carefully consider the relationship you have built with your dentist and the quality of care you’ve received over the years. If you are seeing a dentist you like and trust, why would you leave?  Is the $10 (or more) you might save, more important than staying with your continuation of care?

I have heard of many new types of dental plans coming in 2018. Some of these plans have even more ridiculous limitations than those imposed upon patients in 2017. Some patients blame their employers; however, the employers are “sold” on these plans, often not realizing the limitations provided to their employees.

So with a new year approaching, are you going to be the patient who is really in charge of your dental care?

Dr. Rita Tempel is the owner and founder of Gettysburg Smiles, a cosmetic and family dental practice located at 2018 York Road (Route 30 East), Gettysburg. She is a Sustaining Member of the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry. For more information, see GettysburgSmiles.com, follow Gettysburg Smiles on Facebook, or call 717-339-0033.


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