Key Takeaways

  • Estimates are rarely given without an examination because your dental care needs are unique.
  • You have the right to seek a second opinion.
  • If getting a second opinion, you will likely have to pay for the additional examination and consultation.

The Estimate Process

Before any treatment can start, your dentist will review your medical history and symptoms. They will also do a thorough examination of your mouth. Dental treatments are always patient-specific, based on your individual needs. Since dental health needs vary between people, so will treatment plans. No two treatment plans are the same.

After the exam, a dentist will review treatment options with you. They will also provide a cost estimate for the treatment plan before proceeding. Your dentist can only provide a cost estimate because costs may change when the actual treatment is being given. Like any medical procedure, treatment planning can also change over the course of treatment. This can also have an influence on cost.

Ask your dentist the following questions to help you learn more about what they’re proposing and the options available to you:

  • Why are you recommending the treatment option(s) presented — how will it benefit my dental/general health?
  • Are there alternative treatment options available?
  • What are the implications if I refuse or delay treatment?
  • What can I do to prevent similar problems in the future?
  • What can I do to maintain the dental treatment you’ve recommended?

Getting a Second Opinion

It’s important that you feel comfortable before proceeding with any dental treatment. If you’re concerned with any aspect of a proposed treatment plan, you can always seek a second opinion.

Seeking a second opinion means you’ll likely need to pay for another examination and consultation with the second dentist. They will need to conduct an examination and consult with you to develop treatment options. After their assessment and estimate are complete, it’s up to you to choose the option that you’re most comfortable with.

Remember that it’s a dentist’s duty to propose the best treatment plan for your health.

Your Dental Benefits

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