When it comes to oral health, preventive care is key. Unfortunately, many individuals forego regular dental visits due to time constraints or financial reasons. However, this could end up costing you a lot more in the long run. Not going to the dentist can lead to severe and costly dental issues that become much more complicated and expensive with each passing year.
“How much does a dentist make?” It’s a question that people outside of the profession are probably wondering about. Between all the procedures and examinations they do, you won’t be totally mistaken to assume that they do in fact make a lot of money with what they’re doing. However, don’t make the mistake of thinking that these experts are only out there to gut you; there are really some good reasons out there as to why dentists charge the way they do.
Now, you would be surprised to find out that despite the high cost of dental procedures and basic examinations, dentists don’t make a lot of profit right from the get-go. We here are going to let you in on: dentists make their profit from charging by the hour and increasing the price tag on the supplies you need, such as when you’re going to get braces or a root canal, to name a few.
But, if we’re talking about something along the lines of basic dental maintenance, meaning general examinations, then you should know that this particular procedure is far less expensive, which means your orthodontist won’t be making much of a profit from this. Now, we’re not telling you to go out and bankrupt your dentist; we’re telling you that there is a way for you to save on some money while keeping your teeth and gums healthy.
So, allow us to provide you with a quick guide on what to expect from these basic examinations and give you some tips on how you could cut costs without sacrificing your oral health.
The Cost of a Basic Dental Exam
Depending on where you live, a basic dental check-up can go anywhere between $50 and $200, which is far less than what you would spend on major procedures like root canals or denture attachments. However, we’re not going to lie to you: there could be other requirements needed for the check-up that will have you spending just a bit more.
For one, your dentist may require that you initially get an X-Ray, whose costs could go as low as about $25 to as high as $250.
For another, perhaps your dentist may require that you go through a basic dental cleaning, which usually comes with a price tag of about $75 to $200. It may seem high, we know, but it’s definitely saving you money in the long run. Just imagine: a single root canal could cost you at least $300, and that doesn’t even include all the other requirements for that particular procedure.
Also, you should keep in mind that the prices we just mentioned are all computations based purely on cash or credit transactions. This means that there is a chance that you might be spending less – or even none at all – if you had some sort of insurance or know other ways how to cut expenses.
Still not convinced? Well, let’s look at how much you might end up spending if you didn’t perform the proper maintenance on your teeth and gums.
How Much Will Not Going To The Dentist Cost You?
Like we said earlier, other, more major procedures on your teeth and gums are the ones that help your dentist get a lot of profit, so it goes without saying that the prices and rates for certain surgeries and dental correction procedures cost a lot of money.
Just think of it this way: the more you abandon proper dental care, the more major the procedure you’re going to end up needing. And the more major the procedure, the more expensive it’ll be. As such, it’s only right that you keep yourself free from any problems in order to save not just on money, but on time and discomfort as well. Even worse, there are even some procedures out there that aren’t considered major but come with price tags that could make you dizzy. Here are a few examples of how much exactly these things could cost:
- Got a dying tooth that needs to be taken out? You’re going to need an extraction, which costs anywhere between $50 and $900
- Now, let’s say you don’t want to lose any of your teeth, but one of them has become a cesspool of bacteria. In this case, you’re going to need a root canal, which go from $300 to $2000 per tooth!
- Now, if you need replacements for teeth that you’ve lost, you can either go with a dental implant, which go from $1000 at the least and only goes up from there. Or, you can opt for dentures, which run from $300 to $5000, depending on the quality you want.
- So, as you can see, the $50-$100 you spend twice a year on dental exams are measly compared to all those procedures we just listed.
How You Can Save On Dental Check-Ups
Don’t worry, because we’re here to help you save on some money when it comes to your basic dental maintenance. First of all, keep in mind that this procedure is so common that a quick browse on nearby dentists in your area would reveal that they’re actually competing with one another to lowered costs.
Aside from doing some research on your own, though, there are a few more ways that can further cut your dentist’s costs without having to abandon your much needed dental maintenance.
If you live in a country that has healthcare, then this shouldn’t be a problem. If not, though, then we’re sorry to hear that. In any case, public healthcare plans only work as great alternatives instead of a reliable cost-cutting technique. You see, most countries don’t really cover dental coverage (although there are a few exemptions). So, do your research on this first to see if your country, city, state or town offers any dental care assistance, much less have any public healthcare at all.
An even better option is to opt for your own private dental insurance. These things mostly cover preventative care or maintenance, which means they include procedures like cleanings, x-rays, and exams at the least. More premium plans, on the other hand, cover more serious operations, so all you have to do is choose the right one for you.
Go For A Discount Dental Plan
Unlike dental insurance, where you have to pay premiums, discount dental plans make you pay a membership fee. If you ask us, this is one of the handiest money-saving techniques out there when it comes to your dental health. You see, your dental insurance could only cover a number of procedures depending on the plan you have, but discount dental plans provide an unlimited number of these things once you become a member at incredibly reduced rates. So, we highly suggest you do research on what plans are available in your area to reap its benefits!
Go To A Dental School!
No, we’re not saying you should enrol in a dental school so you could perform all the procedures by yourself; we’re saying go to a dental school to get the procedure that you need. But, wait, aren’t dental schools full of inexperienced trainees that don’t know what they’re dealing with yet?
Well, we’re going to let you in on one of the best cost-cutting techniques you can find out: dental schools are very, very similar to visiting a dentist’s clinic. First of all, we understand that you could be worried that a student who hasn’t earned their title yet will be working on you in this case, but keep in mind that there is always a certified dental expert around whenever a procedure is done by one of these trainees.
Especially when it comes to basic dental examinations, which are low-risk procedures that won’t put your oral health in any danger, then this one is a pretty ideal go-to way to save your money.
But, let’s say you need more than a basic cleaning or exam. We’d understand that you probably won’t like the idea of a trainee poking around your mouth in this particular scenario, but again, there is an alternative: approach an instructor or postgraduate faculty in the school. Now, this may cost a bit more, given that you’re being serviced by a certified dental professional and that the procedure is more extensive, but it still beats going to a clinic when it comes to savings.
The only problem with this method is that you’ll be asked to be placed on a waiting list more often than not, so if you need urgent care, we advise that you don’t opt for this. Otherwise, you’re all good!
All in all, you should know that it doesn’t have to cost you a ton of money to keep up with proper dental health. Showing up for a basic examination or cleaning twice a year is enough to stay away from any unwanted issues. Just remember: prevention is better than the cure! Good luck!
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