In this time of economic down turn even though I don’t see much of this going on in Omaha compared to other city’s across the country, concern on making good spending decisions run higher than normal. In making these decisions sometimes health is put on the back burner. This many times causes more problems than it prevents because in dentistry the cue that something is wrong is pain. Pain is the last stage of the disease process. I also hear a great deal with new patients coming into the office that they waited because they did not have dental insurance. Let’s talk for a minute what dental insurance is and is not. Dental insurance is not like medical insurance in that there are no tables to determine when a person is most at risk to dental disease unlike with the rest of the body. Statistics can determine how many people are most susceptible at a certain age for heart attacks, strokes, diabetes etc and tables are determined so that Insurance companies can set tables to determine costs. Dental Insurance is a prepaid program with limitations to the amount the insurance company can pay out to each policy holder in any given year. To complicate the issue they have procedures that they pay very well for and those that they don’t. Many times there is no guarantee that they will pay at all. The important thing to note is that in 1971 General Motors had the first dental insurance plan, and at that time, they had a maximum pay out for one year at $1000. Today even though the premiums are a great deal higher, most plans average $1000. Now with the cost of inflation it should be at least a payout of $3,500 per year. Dental insurance bought a great deal of dental care in 1971 with very few limitations, but today as you can see, it’s a completely different story. People are being misled that if they have dental insurance that all is well. Those that I have seen who have not had an examination for some time, seem to have this expectation that since they have dental insurance now that they will get healthy. Depending on their state of health there is not enough benefit in their plan to get them beyond disease and back to health. Many times if a patient is waiting for a new maximum per year because they have exhausted the dollars for that particular year they could be getting further and further behind THE GOOD NEWS IS PREVENTION AND FOLLOWING A SYSTEM OF HEALTH INSTEAD OF PUTTING OUT FIRES IN DISEASE CARE. Dental disease is a disease of choice.
The protection that one has against expensive dental bills is PREVENTION. How does one prevent dental disease? There are three reasons why people lose their teeth. They are, tooth decay, gum disease, and bad bite. The first two reasons, tooth decay and gum disease in most cases are diseases of choice. They are caused by acids that coat the teeth, eating away at everything it sits on. Understanding what you can do to remove this acid is the key to prevention.
People are not born with this knowledge, and having a dental team that is skilled in coaching techniques, partnering with you to help you take control is the secret to recession proofing your mouth. To many people leave their health to fate or luck, and this is very sad. Just going to the dentist is not good enough. It is what you are doing out of the office that is what will keep you healthy. The key is finding the right team for not all dental offices is skilled at prevention. The practice team must be designed with the intention of helping people be healthy, for the alternative is an office team designed to fix disease. There are two fundamentally different positions philosophically The way to tell what office you are in is if the discussion with you is future focused on where you see yourself 10 years from now looking at causes of disease or is the office team just interested in fixing the problem with no discussion on how it happened and what to do to prevent it in the future.
Knowing how to prevent dental disease being coached to meet your goals is the key to recession proofing your mouth For more information you can visit my website at www.drtjbolt.com.