In the Best Interest of your Dental Health

DENTIST PRICES and DENTAL COSTS: Finding Affordable Dental Care

Posted by Dr. Joanne Baldos and Dr. Adam Szymczak on Apr 17, 2019, 9:26:33 PM

Let’s start with the shocking truth:

 

Dentist prices do not differ much, however, your dental costs will differ greatly depending on which dentist you see!?

 

In other words, the price of a specific dental procedure does not differ from dentist to dentist, however the number and the extent of the procedures that you will have done depends on who your dentist is!

How much of a difference in your dental costs? As much as $1,000 instead of paying $150!!! So if you are looking for affordable dental care STOP wasting time by comparing dentist prices and reduce your dental costs by finding the best dentist: a dentist that you do not need! 

 

Knowing the difference between dentist prices and dental costs is the way to finding affordable dental care!

 

 

1) Do Dentist Prices Differ?

NO! Dentist Prices in Toronto = Dentist Prices in Ontario

Dentist Prices in Toronto, Dentist Prices in Ontario, Dentist Prices in Canada

Almost all dentists in Ontario follow the current Ontario Dental Association (ODA) Suggested Fee Guide because most dental insurance companies reimburse based on the ODA fee guide. This is true for procedures that are typically covered by dental insurance such as dental cleanings, x-rays, fillings, extractions, root canals, crowns and dentures.

 

The ODA Suggested Fee Guide:

  • is about 80 pages long!
  • contains about 1,300 dental procedures!
  • identifies each dental procedure by a 5 digit number: the dental code
  • many dental treatments are a combination of multiple codes
  • it is written in “dentist language”; words like: cleaning/ check-up/ filling/ cap are NOT used
  • is not available online
  • copies are available in the reference section of many public libraries
  • although the Fee Guide is “suggested” almost all dentists in Ontario follow it

Dentist prices do differ significantly between dentists for procedures typically NOT covered by insurance:

  • cosmetic procedures such as teeth whitening, veneers, braces
  • expensive procedures that insurance companies do not cover such as dental implants

 

Do Dentist Prices in Ontario = Dentist Prices in Canada? NO!

 

The other Canadian provinces have fee guides similar to the ODA Fee Guide. However, the dentist prices do differ between the different provinces.

 

For example:

How Much Does a Dental Cleaning Cost?

Dental cleaning cost, in Canada and the USA, is based on time. One unit (1U) is 15 min. Therefore, your dental cleaning cost depends on:

  • how much tartar and plaque you have on your teeth, which in turn depends on how good your oral hygiene is: the better you do at home the less cleaning time you will need
  • the efficiency of the dental professional cleaning your teeth

If you want to save on your dental cleaning cost, choose a hygienist that is experienced: the removal of your tartar and plaque will be more efficient: a more detailed cleaning is less time. Your dental cleaning cost will be lower and the cleaning will be better!

 

Dentist Prices in Ontario and Dentist Prices in Canada for some of the most common dental procedures:

 

Dental Procedure: common language

Dental Procedure: dentist language

Dental Procedure: dentist code

Dentist Price: Ontario 2019

Dentist Price: British Columbia 2018

Dentist Price: Alberta 2019

Dental Cleaning

Scaling: 2 Units= 30 min

11112

$114.00

$89.00

$134.32

Dental Check up by dentist

Examination and Diagnosis of Previous Patient

01202

$33.00

$28.50

$64.19

Check-up X-rays

 

2 Bitewing Radiographs

 

02142

 

 

$34.00

$23.70

$45.08

Tooth Extraction: Simple

Removal: Uncomplicated

71101

$160.00

$123.00

$134.33

Tooth Extraction: Complicated

Removal: Complicated

 

71201

$247.00

$236.00

$242.25

White Filling: Molar: Small Size

Restoration: Tooth Coloured: Molar: One Surface

23321

$188.00

$156.00

$149.60

White Filling: Molar: Medium Size

Restoration: Tooth Coloured: Molar: Two Surfaces

23322

$235.00

$238.00

$210.90

White Filling: Molar: Large Size

Restoration: Tooth Coloured: Molar: Three  Surfaces 

23323

$282.00

$287.00

$249.69

White Filling Molar: Very Large Size

Restoration: Tooth Coloured: Molar: Four Surfaces

23324

$349.00

$344.00

 

White Filling Molar: Huge Size

Restoration: Tooth Coloured: Molar: Five Surfaces

23325

$368.00

$408.00

 

Root Canal: Front Tooth

Root Canal: One Canal

33111

$511.00

$456.00

$662.15

Root Canal: Molar

Root Canal: Three Canals

33131

$857.00

$825.00

$1,127.65

 

Dentist prices within any given province do not vary from dentist to dentist because each province has a fee guide. However, dentist prices across Canada do differ from province to province.

 

In the United States, dentist prices differ greatly from dentist to dentist even within any specific state! This makes choosing a dentist very complicated.

 

In Ontario, or in any specific province, dentist prices are the same so if you want to find affordable dental care you should focus on choosing the best dentist: a dentist that always has your best interests in mind.


2) Dental Costs Differ Between Different Dentists! ?

Dental Costs Differ Between Different Dentists, But Dental Prices Do NOT!?

Some dentists are more aggressive with dental treatment recommendations than others!

 

A CBC researcher visited 20 dentists across Canada, the investigation concluded:

  • dentists vary on the amount of recommended treatment which causes dental costs to vary greatly from dentist to dentist
  • dental cost estimates from the 20 dentists consulted ranged from $144 to $11,931
  • the correct amount of treatment, and therefore dental cost, was about $1,900
  • 40% of the dentists recommended significantly beyond what should be recommended

The above investigation was done in 2012, the dental cost differences between different dentists are even greater now and getting worse because of:

 

If you want to save money on dental costs choose the best dentist:

 

Investing time to find a dentist will not only save you on dental costs, but it will save you time!

 

No matter who your dentist is, you can significantly reduce your dental costs by asking 3 simple questions when a dentist recommends a procedure, it will help you avoiding unnecessary dental work.

 

 

3) Looking for a cheap dentist?

Cheap Dentist, Dentist Prices, Dental Costs

 

Compared to your other expenses your dental costs can be very high, as such you may be motivated to “shop around”, to save yourself some money.

 

You are probably going about it the wrong way by asking the wrong questions. These wrong questions will lead you to exactly the opposite: your dental costs will actually go up! :(

 

You may have convinced yourself or someone has convinced you that you need a specific procedure, so you call around for pricing. As noted above dentist prices do not differ much, so you get excited when you find a dentist that appears to be “10% cheaper”.

 

What if you do not need the procedure to begin with?- you would save yourself 100% of the dental cost! What if there is an alternative procedure that is 50% cheaper, but just as good? This happens all the time, as noted above some dentists are more aggressive with dental treatment and dental treatment recommendations.

 

Instead of looking for a “deal” to save on dental costs, look for the Best Dentist (the one you do NOT need!!!) The Best dentist will truly save you time and money!

 

One of the worst choices you can make is to choose a dentist that advertises. A dentist that advertises is likely a “business dentist” not a “doctor dentist”. Who do you think is paying for all the advertising? You are!- through higher dental costs!

 

Ask yourself: Why is a dentist advertising? Most people find a dentist through word of mouth?- so perhaps it is because people are NOT excited about recommending this dentist to their family and friends, so the “business dentist” must advertise to get patients.

 

In the best interest of your health and well-being,

Dr. Joanne Baldos and Dr. Adam Szymczak

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