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Information and Helpful Links

How to save money with dental discount plans, the truth about gum disease, how to get mail order medicines without a local dentist's prescription, and more.

On This Page:  
Dental Discounts
Dental Insurance
Dentist Reviews
Dental News
Dental Products
Periodontal Gum Disease

Dental Implants
Dental Information
What Dentist Don't Tell You!

Dental Discounts are a great way to save money on your dental costs. It is a straight forward arrangement; you pay a monthly payment and in return you receive a discount from the dentists listed in that dental plan's provider list. Dental discount plans may save 20% to 25% off normal dental fees and sometimes a lot more (discounts plans very). Be clear about this, Dental Discount Plans ARE NOT insurance, patients are fully responsible to pay their own dental bills; these dental plans are simply discounts off of a dentist's normal fees.

Are these discount plans genuine? The dental discount programs that I know of are all genuine, the only short-coming I found was that dentists at the large clinics come and go, so it is a good idea to contact the dental office before going to see if a dentist listed in a provider list is still there and participating in the discount program.

There are numerous dental discount programs to choose from. You can find dental discount plans from about $10.00 up to about $100.00 a month. There are often other discount programs folded into these dental discount plans at no additional cost, such as prescription discounts, hotel discounts, legal fee discounts, vision discounts, and so on. Some companies will also offer medical discount plans for an additional price. It seems that most dental discount plans are payable on a month to month basis and can be cancelled at anytime, and they also generally provide discounts even on pre-existing conditions. As always, shop, read, and compare.

What dental discount plan do you really need? If you do not have any type of health insurance you might want to consider a dental discount plan that also includes a prescription drug discount program because dental care can often involve antibiotics and pain medication. Even people who have medical insurance sometimes do not have dental insurance due to the high cost so a dental discount plan could be a great addition to a health insurance plan.

Your biggest consideration when choosing a dental discount plan might should be what dental providers are participating in your town or city. Many dental discount plans have an online list of dental providers at their web site so that you can see if there is a dentist in your area before signing up for their plan. If they do not have a list online, you can try to contact them by phone and ask about dental providers in your area. Also, it might be a good idea to take the time to call some of the dentists in your area that are listed by a dental plan to be sure that those dentists are still participating with that particular dental discount plan (they can and do change).

Dental Insurance is often costly and limited as to what the insurance will cover. Dental Insurance may also limit the dollar amount that will be paid annually for some dental procedures. When considering dental insurance, read the policy carefully to discover the limits; it could actually be helpful to also subscribe to a dental discount plan in addition to dental insurance. As always, shop, read, and compare.

Dentist Reviews can be helpful. Many people have come to realize that doctors and dentist are not above reproach; that there are good and bad people in all walks of life. In order to avoid a dentist that is not popular with his/her patients you might want to check out some dentist review sites. Remember that no one can please everyone all the time, and that there are some pretty nutty patients out there. Use common sense when reading reviews.

Source for Dentist Ratings and Reviews Around the Country.

Yahoo! Local

Dental News that might be of interest to the average person is now available on the Internet for anyone to read.

Is re-growing teeth possible? I don't know, but here are some opinions.
How to re-grow or repair bad teeth naturally.
Material Promotes Tooth Structure Regrowth
The Life Extension Forums - Regrow teeth
Medical Technology Watch - Oral Health Issue
Lipus Foundation - Tooth Regrowing
Pump's Personal Blog - Lipus (Low Intensity Pulsed Ultrasound)

Dental Products are a growing area of dental care as people look for additional sources to help with dental care and problems. As well as doing research online, take thirty minutes to go to your local drug store and study the dental section (drug stores generally have a better selection of dental products than other stores); you might be truly surprised at what all is available at your local stores. There are filling materials that are easy to use for loose or missing fillings, surface area (topical) pain medications, there are special, very tiny brushes for getting between teeth, there are small head brushes for reaching tight, back areas, there are fluoride rinses, some antibacterial products, and on and on - take the time to go look.

Natural Dental Products: There are new dental procedures that are less invasive than traditional procedures and there are natural herbs and minerals that many people have found to be welcome additions to normal medicines. From what I have read, one supplement, CoQ10, has been getting a lot of attention lately as being healthy for the gums, and herbs such as Golden Seal might help as a topical antibiotic for minor infections, vitamin E might also be helpful, and so on. There are some toothpaste products that contain possibly helpful ingredients including the much talked about CoQ10. Do some reading and research.

Check out the Natural Dental Products links on this page.

CoQ10 Toothpaste Web Site:

Severe dental conditions, such as infections and advanced gingivitis, may be beyond the help of natural products; this web site in no way encourages you to try and substitute natural help aids for aggressive dental treatments and antibiotics.

Traditional Dental Products:

Fluoride has long been deemed to have the ability to reduce cavities and maybe even repair minor decay and it is common in many toothpastes, but what is less well known is that there are a number of over-the-counter mouthwashes that also contain fluoride (Some fluoride rinses do not have antibacterial ingredients so it might take two mouthwashes; however, Johnson & Johnson's Reach ACT Restoring Mouthwash Anti-cavity rinse says that it has both anti-cavity fluoride and antibacterial alcohol contents, and it even tastes pretty decent). Tom's has some good fluoride dental products and some other companies are joining in, but check the fluoride percent, because some actually have a low fluoride percent. For even higher fluoride content, there are prescription strength fluoride toothpastes, pills and rinses.

Yahoo! Health - 8 Things You Didn't Know About Toothpaste.

Fluoride information:

Very good general dental page from WebMD

Periodontal Gum Disease (from my research, gingivitis is most noticeable as bleeding gums or later as receding gums, but marked by bacteria lodged under the gums) is a huge cause of tooth loss and illness especially as people enter mid-life. Periodontal Disease might be considered one of the silent killers because the medical world seems to have found strong links to heart disease caused by the bacteria associated with Periodontal Disease. If you have Periodontal Disease and additionally feel extremely ill there could be an link between the two conditions. A "Deep Cleaning" could help with your general over-all health.

Periodontal Disease often goes untreated due to the cost of treatment and persecution from insensitive and poorly educated dentists. Periodontal Disease has many causes including heredity, but too often patients are treated badly and made to feel as if they do not responsibly care for their teeth, this causes patients to avoid the dentist to avoid embarrassment.

The standard treatment for Periodontal Disease seems to be "Deep Cleaning" or "Scaling and Root Planing" which is a fancy way of saying that the dentist removes plaque below the gum line. The cost is generally under a thousand dollars, but to a lot people it might as well be a hundred thousand dollars. Unfortunately it is difficult to find a dentist who will do the Deep Cleaning treatment in smaller, quarter sections that would be more affordable. A dental discount plan may help with the cost or you might try setting up a prepayment plan with an established dentist. Some dentist are modernized and have laser equipment for deep cleaning, but laser cleaning might be up in the ten thousand dollar range. There are also some new treatments that I have noted below.

WebMD link that discusses gum disease:

WebMD link that discusses gum disease treatments:

New treatment source: (Text from the Perio Protect web site.) Perio Protect is a new, home care treatment program for periodontal disease using a dentist-created and FDA-cleared medical device that can deliver doctor-prescribed medications to the source of periodontal infections. These medications address the pathogens that cause gum disease.

Some of the supplements that are often recommended for periodontal disease are: vitamins C and D, COQ10, and Tea Tree Oil.

Helpful sites for understanding Periodontal Disease and treatments.

WikiAnswers - - Can gums grow back around teeth naturally?
Interesting opinons about gum disease and treatments. web site:

A private dental practice web site with good information

GoAskAlice - Receding gums.

Dental Implants are becoming more commonplace, but the thing to know, from my understanding, is that implants are only as good as the bone structure that holds them. When speaking with a dentist about implants, be sure to ask if your bone will hold implants or if you would need a bone graft, which adds significantly to the cost.

These dental sites have some good general information about dental implants.

Dental Implants

ADHP - Provides Affordable Dental Implants Throughout Southern California.

ADHP - Cost of Dental Implants.
Very few dentists put their prices out there, I'm impressed with this site.

Affordable Dentures - Mini Dental Implants.
Good pictures of dental implants. - Dr. Hamblin vs ClearChoice.
This has some good general information about dental implants.

Dentures are a replacement option for missing teeth and can be full, upper or lower only, or partial sections. There was a time that we thought of dentures as what happens to people when they get old and their teeth wear out. However, it is becoming more and more common for mid-lifers and even young adults to have dentures, possibly due to the high cost of dental care. Today, the popular answer to severe dental problems might be full extraction and dentures and when a patient is in excruciating pain they would come close to selling their souls to stop the pain. A patient in pain is in an extremely weak position to be making such a life changing and expensive decision as dentures.

Tooth extraction can literally be a living saving solution, but is it the only solution? While some people are afraid of dentists, money is often the hold-back from proper dental care, yet a patient, not properly informed, can spend enough on the road to dentures to have properly addressed their dental problems. Some dental clinics seem to be big on full extractions and dentures; a full extraction doesn't leave any future profits for other dentists, now does it.

When a dentist says that dentures will cost a couple of thousand dollars, the uninformed patient or the patient in pain doesn't know to ask - "Is that all there is?". No, that's not all there is to the cost. Some teeth may have to be extracted, at a price, and that price can be exceedingly high if oral surgery is required. The dentures have to be made, at a price (and possibly remade in later years due to poor fit from bone loss after tooth extractions). For a better denture situation, the dentist may try to save some of a patients teeth with root canals and caps or try to place implants to anchor the dentures, at a hefty price. Add all of these expenses together and a patient could be looking at closer to ten thousand dollars - or are there other options for ten thousand dollars? Again, due to bacterial infections and such, tooth extraction can be a life saving necessity, but as always, shop, read, and compare so that you can make an informed decision.

Yahoo! Answers - How much will getting dentures cost me?

Orthodontics is what lay-people might think of as having braces placed on people's teeth to straighten the teeth. However, Orthodontics is not quite as straight forward as it appears. The possibility exists for a lot of damage to be done to teeth by having braces placed on the teeth, damage to both the teeth and to the gums leading to cavities and periodontal disease. Additionally, an under-bite or over-bite may be compounded by an imperfect jawbone structure that could require an operation to correct the jawbone. There are different styles of braces and it might be advisable to do research to find the least damaging braces for the teeth condition in question. As always, shop, read, and compare.

The saddest orthodontic situation arises from the fact that it would seem the majority of people that have braces placed on their teeth are children and young adults, and neither are generally equipped to deal with the realities of braces or an unscrupulous dentist who is only interested in the dollars they can extract from a well meaning parent's pocket. Children normally do not know to research dental procedures, nor to get several opinions to try and discover what procedures will actually achieve the desired results. It might also be advisable to get several opinions as to the time and cost involved for the braces; an unscrupulous Orthodontists could easily drag a year and a half of dental treatment into two or three years for the uninformed patient. It is unfortunate that the good Orthodontists have to suffer through inquires and second opinions, but even a referral from your trusted family dentist can be huge mistake.

Even beyond the child's lack of knowledge of Orthodontics is the child's weak position of inferiority in relation to an adult dentist. Too often a parent leaves it to their teenage children to take themselves to the Orthodontist; leaving a teenage-child to deal with an adult who is in a stupor position. Having a dental file graded between a child's teeth, grinding off tooth enamel and being carelessly yanked up into their gums, time after time, with no parent present to protect them is sad, but it happens and it could be happening to your child. Kids don't tell their parents what goes on, do they? Your child may have the best, kindest Orthodontist in your city, but the only way to know for sure - is to be there. Don't leave your children alone with doctors and dentists or other adults in such superior positions.

Dental Information is abundant, but shifting through it can be confusing. A good place to start is with a major medical information web site such as WebMD. (This web site is an authorized WebMD linking site.)

Good starting oral health page from WebMD

There is a lot of discussion about going out-of-the-country for dental procedures, because of the very low cost. I have heard good and bad. This certainly is not a recommendation to take chances with your health by using foreign dental services; it is just a subject being discussed. There are many web sites about foreign dental services, below are just a couple to give some idea about what's out there. - Helping You Find The Right Dental Implant Clinic In Costa Rica - Headquartered In Atlanta, Georgia. - A US company that facilitates dental treatments in Mexico. - Clinic in Juarez, Mexico has some good information on their site.

What Dentist Don't Tell You! This subject could fill a book, but to be brief, dentists tend not to fully explain a patient's dental situation or what the patient's options are, they may not provide visual illustrations to help a patient understand a dental condition, and some dentists even laugh at natural dental supplements. It is hard to know if some dentists think that their patients don't care or if they think that patients are ignorant. Either way, it leaves it up to patients to shop prices, read dental articles, and compare dental procedures.

Number one, above all others, is the access to antibiotics. The word out there today is that bad teeth can kill you and yet a call to a dentist for antibiotics can be answered with "Drag your pain racked body into the shower; then, if you can see through the blinding pain, climb into your car and drive through heavy traffic to my office, wait in my waiting room for an hour, take my holier than thou about dental hygiene pep-talk and maybe I'll find it in my heart to give you a prescription for antibiotics. Did you know that you can order antibiotics online and have them delivered the next day? It's not cheap, but antibiotics, such as amoxicillin, are pretty common at online pharmacies. It seems that these online drug stores have doctors on hand who can write the prescription for the antibiotic (or other drugs) so that you don't even need a prescription from a local dentist or doctor. These online doctors also appear to also be able to write prescriptions for some of the drugs that you commonly see advertised on television.

Dentist also do not seem to be very forthcoming with referrals to specialist such as Periodontal or Oral Surgeons so it is up to patients to learn about their dental condition and options and to take it upon themselves to go and see a specialist. A general dentist may not know about new procedures and equipment that a specialist probably keeps up with.

Ordering prescriptions online is becoming popular and common place. However, many companies have been in the news for being raided for bogus drugs and bad conditions.

General Tips for Tooth Pain Relief

Abscessed Tooth Problems?

Here is an interesting web site with a helpful suggestion for dealing with an abscessed tooth. Eat cashews it says; it could be a tasty test, with nothing to lose, unless you are allergic to nuts. There a numerous sites that support this idea, just do a search for cashews and abscessed teeth.

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