As a general dentist in Davneport Iowa, people always ask me if I am a cosmetic dentist. I am tenpted to chuckle because all dentistry should be cosmetic, look natural and be healthy for your mouth and your body.
Because in my profession there are some dentist that think of their bank account instead the best interest of the patient, I would like to discuss a very delicate topic.
In our society, ugly is considered a disease that needs treatment. Breast implants, face lifts and in dentistry, crowns or veneers or laminates. Now I an not against veneers or laminates in the correct situation. But sometimes a veneer or crown is recommended when their is a better treatment option. Our priority is to first do no harm.
Let me tell you what happened in my office this last week. A 29 year old female patient came to my Davenport dental office for a second opinion. This patient has some crowded front teeth and two rather ugly crowns on her two front middle teeth. Another dentist had recommended crowning or capping all six front teeth because of the crowding. So the crowns would straighten her smile. The cost would be over $6,000 minimum. This patient was also not happy with her bite. Her front teeth were placed so far ahead of her bottom teeth she could not bite her food. This condition is call “overjet”. The ohter dentist said that her bite could be fixed with crowns. I did not agree. I had my associate give a third opinion and she agreed that this patient needed braces or orthodontic treatment. Why would we grind on perfectly good teeth because they were crowded. I explained to the patient that once the teeth were ground down to make crowns, it was down hill. The crowns would eventually need replacments and the costs and painwould continue for her lifetime.
I referred this patient to a Bettendorf orthodontist named Steven Mack for an evaluation. Could I have recommended crowns and made money off this patient? Yes, but our patient’s health and well being is our priority.
If this patient has orthodontic treatment, the cost will be about the same, this difference is that we will not destroy her front teeth but preserve them the way God made them. Instead of amputating her teeth will will enhance what Gog gave her.