If you have a gap from a congenitally missing tooth, or have lost one due to trauma or extraction, you may be considering a dental implant. This method of tooth replacement has been in use in this country since the early 1980s. It is gaining popularity because the implant restoration looks natural, feels normal in the mouth, and functions like a real tooth – plus, it can last a lifetime with good care. Many patients are concerned, though, about how dental insurance will respond to a tooth implant procedure. Social Circle dentist, Dr. Don D. Jones, shares these important points.
The insurance landscape is changing
Every insurance plan is different, and coverages and conditions can change at any time, with appropriate notice to participants. However, at this time, dental insurance plans generally apply the following logic to dental implants. First, because other options for tooth replacement are available, getting a dental implant is considered “elective.” Second, elective procedures are not covered if a less costly alternative is available. So, dental insurance typically pays a limited amount – roughly the “usual and customary fee” for a partial denture or bridge – toward the cost of a dental implant. There may also be some coverage for diagnostic tests and tooth extraction, and medical insurance could cover bone grafts if necessary. As dental implants become more common, some premium insurance plans are covering the cost of the procedure.
If you participate in an FSA (flexible spending account), where you set aside pre-tax dollars for medical expenses, you are in luck. Because a dental implant is not considered purely cosmetic in nature, the procedure is an eligible expense (the oral surgery, placement of the post, and the crown restoration).
Not your only option
It is important to know that a dental implant is not your only choice to restore your smile and oral function. Dr. Jones will be happy to talk with you about the possibility of a dental bridge or a partial denture. Regardless of insurance status, these alternatives make sense for many patients.
Here to help
Dr. Jones and his team at Social Circle Dental want you to have the dental care you need and the attractive smile you deserve. They will obtain an estimate of what your insurance plan will pay for a dental implant or other procedure, and provide assistance in filing the insurance claim. In addition, Social Circle Dental accepts payment by major credit card, and financing through CareCredit and Lending Club.
If you are considering a tooth implant procedure, call Social Circle Dental at 770-464-1900. Dr. Jones is passionate about helping patients make informed decisions to get the dental healthcare they need.
American culture has been in the midst of a teeth whitening craze for quite some time. Who can forget the Friends episode where Ross takes teeth whitening a little too far? Today, it seems like you find teeth bleaching products in every drug, grocery, and discount store. Despite the popularity of this procedure, a lot of misconceptions about teeth whitening persist. Dr. Don Jones of Social Circle Dental is here to debunk the myths about having your teeth whitened.
Myth #1 – Teeth whitening is painful
The procedure is not painful – in fact, it's not even uncomfortable. Dr. Jones takes impressions of your mouth to create trays with a customized fit. The trays are flexible and smooth. They fit snugly to keep the whitening agent on teeth (not soft tissues) to minimize risk of sensitivity. You simply fill the trays with prescription strength whitening gel and wear them for an hour or so each day at your convenience, until you reach the desired shade of brilliance.
Myth #2 – Teeth whitening harms tooth enamel
Because teeth whitening products are not considered to be drugs, they are not regulated by the FDA. However, many have received the American Dental Association's seal of acceptance, affirming safety and effectiveness. Used properly, teeth whitening has no effect on mineral content or hardness of tooth enamel.
Myth #3 – All teeth whitening products are the same
Over the counter products lack the strength to loosen and lift deep stains. Light activated one-hour systems temporarily dehydrate tooth enamel. Dr. Jones recommends at home whitening for the most effective yet gentle smile boost. He chooses the bleaching agent best suited to the type of stains you have to accomplish your whitening goals.
Myth #4 – There's no need to have a dentist's oversight for teeth whitening
A dentist has a minimum of eight years of formal education, including general medical background and clinical experience. He or she is in the best position to answer your questions about teeth whitening, evaluate your oral health, recommend the correct treatment plan, and monitor your progress.
Myth #5 – Teeth whitening results don't last
As long as you continue to eat, drink, and grow older, no tooth bleaching system is once and done. However, take home trays are a convenient way to keep your smile dazzling and youthful looking, with just an occasional touch up.
Now that you know the truth, are you ready to brighten that smile? Call Social Circle Dental today, at 770-464-1900 to start creating your sparkling smile with professional teeth whitening.
Social Circle Dental is a holistic dental practice devoted to restoring and enhancing the natural beauty of your smile using conservative, state-of-the-art procedures, while focusing on your overall health and well-being.