If you’ve visited your dentist at least once in the past year, congratulations! You are officially part of the 75% of all Canadians that make this annual visit a priority*. It is easy to think that this one visit is enough to assist in taking care of our teeth; Typically patients schedule this visit as a check-up and cleaning with their dentist and/or dental hygienist. However, the Canadian Dental Association suggests that patients should be doing this every 6 months and dental professionals across the country may recommend visits as frequent as every 3 months!
How Often Should I Visit the Dentist?
With all of this conflicting information, it can be frustrating for patients to try and figure out when exactly they should be heading to their local clinic and how much needs to be budgeted for dental expenses. It’s no secret that dental services can be quite expensive, especially when intensive treatments are necessary.
The truth is, people aren’t perfect! For one reason or another we may forget to practice our oral care routine daily, or we have too many responsibilities to be able to make time to see the dentist within the year. This along with other possible factors may cause the health of our teeth and gums to suffer. Therefore, depending on your situation, your dentist may schedule your next appointment between 3 to 6 months. They may even schedule multiple cleaning appointments weeks apart for more severe cases due to deep pockets of plaque and tartar beneath the gum line!
Why is the Dentist so Expensive?!
The right question may not be why the dentist is expensive but rather, “Why are MY visits so expensive?”
The average cost of a standard cleaning appointment at a dental clinic in Canada will cost anywhere from $150 to $300 depending on which services are included in the appointment. Fillings for cavities are priced according to the amount of decay per tooth and can cost well over hundreds of dollars. Even more complicated procedures such as root canals, tooth extractions, dental implants, etc, can end up costing you thousands!
In a single year, the cost of having 2 to 4 cleaning appointments versus the cost of multiple fillings, a root canal or even an implant and you can see how clear the answer is: healthy teeth and gums cost less to care for! Though extensive treatments may be necessary, they are almost completely avoidable through regular maintenance of your oral health.
What can I do to Reduce Dental Costs?
- Maintain a daily oral care regimen that includes brushing, flossing and mouthwash
- Schedule any pending treatments as soon as possible to prevent further complications
- Apply for dental insurance with your employer, through a private company or through the government
- Ask your clinical team to discuss payment options
- Apply for financing for more costly procedures
Ultimately, the best way to understand what your needs are and to budget accordingly is to have an accurate and honest discussion with your dentist/hygienist about your current oral care routine. Try to be open to their feedback and suggestions for upkeep or treatment options. At the end of the day, your dentist and hygienists are there to work with you to keep you healthy and prevent future issues, all while keeping your finances in mind.
Haven’t seen the dentist in a long while? It’s better late than never! Our team at Dental Health Clinic are happy to offer free consultations for new patients. Call us at (416) 742-2300 or send us an email at admin @ dentalhealthclinic.ca to reserve an appointment to meet with our specialists.