Health & Wellness

Do you feel like your Dentist is scamming you?

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  • Jul 11th, 2019 12:41 pm
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[OP]
Deal Addict
Nov 1, 2009
2639 posts
77 upvotes

Do you feel like your Dentist is scamming you?

I must admit that I hadn't gone to a dentist cleaning in about a year till last week - b/c we moved and my previous dentist was too far away. Anyway, the previous dentist was pretty good and did not mention anything about cavities and such. Found a new dentist and went in last day for a cleaning. The new one says that I have 5 cavities that need to be filled and something about filling some other spots between/around the gums to prevent stuff from getting in between or some nonsense like that?

What have your experiences been? Any shady dentists try to push wisdom teeth removals, cavity procedures, etc. etc.?

Not really sure what to do. I "could" go for a second opinion I suppose, but that's more time wasted.
24 replies
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Jan 31, 2006
5141 posts
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Toronto
It might be true that you have cavities consider that you have not gone to a dentist more than a year. But you can seek a second dentist for an checkup and opinion.
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Aug 14, 2009
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London
5 cavities within a year sounds difficult to believe assuming that hasn't been the situation for you... I agree with cgtlky, get a second one for another checkup and opinion.
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Feb 24, 2015
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Fort Mac, AB/Lambton…
A dentist would be more likely to try to scam you if you have insurance.

Most health care professionals have to be concerned about scamming people because if patients were to seek out second opinions, and the second opinion were to be vastly different, then patients could complain to the professional college. If a particular professional/dentist were to receive a number of complaints, then he or she risks losing his or her license to practice. In the case of a dentist, that's a license to print about 300k a year. It's not really worth it to take a risk with that.

Patients with insurance are certainly a lot less likely to seek a second opinion, so dentists will be considerably more likely to take that risk. Not to mention most people, dentists included, don't have a lot of sympathy for the insurance companies.

That's just the rational cynic in me. Being pragmatic, you could ask the dentist to see the x-rays showing the cavities. This is a standard practice actually; the dentist should have shown you the x-ray. A cavity should be pretty apparent.
Moderator
May 28, 2012
10179 posts
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Saskatoon
Not sure if the site Ratemds is still useful...I found my old dentist on there and most of the comments were that he was in it only for the money. I switched dentists and (miraculously) have non-cavity prone teeth. ;)
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Aug 23, 2010
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two dentists will have different interpretations of the same clinical findings and also different approaches to how aggressively they treat decay. this is especially true for smaller cavities.

your xrays and stuff get audited like crazy though. so chances are if he's saying you need some fillings, there's not NOTHING there.
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Moderator
May 28, 2012
10179 posts
2337 upvotes
Saskatoon
heyjoe wrote:
Jun 13th, 2015 2:36 pm
two dentists will have different interpretations of the same clinical findings and also different approaches to how aggressively they treat decay. this is especially true for smaller cavities.

your xrays and stuff get audited like crazy though. so chances are if he's saying you need some fillings, there's not NOTHING there.
I didn't see a dentist for almost ten years...went to see my husband's crook dentist for the first time and I had to get two cavities filled...which was understandable given the time since my last appointment. However, we went to see him for regular checkups every six months and on every single visit I had two small fillings that "needed" to be fixed but without freezing. He was a walking advertisement, kept his bottom teeth natural and super-bleached his tops for contrast. A family of five stopped going to him due to his greed. If all dentists were routinely audited, I can't see how he wasn't reprimanded.
Sr. Member
Mar 19, 2012
745 posts
132 upvotes
Absolutely! If I take my baby to her I'm sure she will say he needs filling! Another dentist removed My hubby's wisdom tooth and she has damaged his tongue. He was in constant pain for 11 days and could not eat anything and lost for 6kg. The dentist (well hygienist ) I went to ask if I have insurance and they did calculate so that I don't have to pay anything but when I was about to leave they charged me 45$-80 something and another 55$. Like I said if I take my baby I'm sure she will say he needs filling! It's almost impossible to find a decent, honest dentist.
Newbie
Jun 23, 2013
36 posts
1 upvote
Once the dentist found out that I have company insurance, she took away $800 in one visit. Filling, cleaning whatever nonsense..

never went back anymore.
Deal Guru
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Mar 14, 2005
12399 posts
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City of Vancouver
Yes, I don't trust dentists. Had a bunch of fillings put in when I was going to school. When I had no coverage, I stopped going. WEnt to see a different dentist 10+ yrs later, who said I didn't have any new cavities, but it looked like a filling had fallen off one of my molars. I don't like sweets and always brushed my teeth, so it was kinda suspicious that I had so many fillings put in before.
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Aug 20, 2012
11934 posts
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Pacific Ocean
That's what happens when you deal with scammers not covered by OHIP. Unfortunately dentists, physio's, optometrists, chiro's are all part of the bunch. My former chiro only worked 20 hrs a week and made over $200k/annum, wtf... about half his income from jacking up prices on orthotics from insurance companies and selling miscellaneous items that he said patients needed - from extra pillows, shoes, sandals, blah, blah.. I lucked out on my dentist. Honest guy. When I told him I thot I had a cavity cuz some other joker dentist said I did he took xrays and charged me half off and looked intently at the tooth area for like 10 min and said the conclusion was a chipped tooth and possibly some minor superficial damage due to aging which was normal from crunching food over time but wasnt rotting as say from tooth decay. As for cleaning, he employs 4 dental hygienist and charges me $85 for full 1 hr cleaning (more like 45-50min as the remainder is chit-chatting with the hygienist. ;) )

As for reporting to the RCDSO, body that governs dentists - they're an effin joke! The board is stacked with dentists and they cover their own. Unless it's a pure black and white case such as pulling the wrong tooth, wrong root canal, misdiagnosis which lead to the latter or other work then you have no case. It becomes arbitrary and the board stacked 2-1 with dentists ALWAYS rule in favor of the doctor. I had a case and after 6 mos of nonsense going back and forth they ruled against me even though the assistant/receptionist and doctor LIED versus what I witnessed and what I was told at the time versus their submissions to the RCDSO. And there's nothing you can do about it. You can sue them in a civil lawsuit but that's time, money, and energy out of your own pocket so unless you are wealthy it aint worth it. The only thing I suggest is always get a 2nd opinion. Dentists are not like MD's, they are always accepting new patients. So if one isnt giving you a good feeling get another until you get one that you feel is honest and right for you. RateMDs is a good starting point. Point blank.
If the glove don't fit you must acquit! #WINNING

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