The age-old idiom ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’ holds true for dental care that’s important and preventative, but perhaps not urgent and thus, easy to forget about until it does become an urgent care matter.
As your life in this modern age is busy and your schedule fills up quickly, it can be tempting to push a procedure recommended by your dentist to the backburner. Perhaps there’s a small cavity which doesn’t need to be filled urgently, but which may become a serious issue when left untreated.
At times, we’ve seen patients in our office at City Oasis Dental who have chosen to defer a recommended procedure because it wasn’t currently bothering them - such as a minor cavity.
However, when it has been allowed to go untreated, many times this has led to a much larger cavity developing, and in some cases the tooth was no longer viable due to the decay from the untreated cavity and extraction of the affected tooth was the only option.
Other times, patients have put off scheduling a needed procedure and have left the country for work or vacation and experienced a dental emergency – this can be extremely problematic and costly, and maybe even unsafe, depending on where in the world this situation occurs.
Save Time and Money
We understand that it can be easy to forget taking care of minor problems right away when you have many things vying for your time. But it’s important to realize that when a problem is detected early, it will end up saving you a great deal of time, hassle, and expense to ensure that it’s corrected straightaway rather than leaving it to become a larger issue taking up much more of your resources.
As an example, treating a cavity immediately will cost approximately $200-$300, whereas a root canal and crown will be about $1,000, and an extraction, implant, and crown rings in at about $5000. Crowns need to be replaced every 10-15 years so this isn’t just a one-time high cost, but an ongoing treatment protocol that will need to be invested in over time.
Bear in mind that cavity care is classified as a basic dental service and as such is nearly always covered by your dental insurance benefits – often times at 100% coverage. On the other hand, crowns and implants are considered major dental services and are frequently not covered through employer insurance. In fact, most dental insurance covers preventative and basic dental care, but coverage is limited or nonexistent with regards to extensive procedures.
It’s also important to realize that allowing problems to go untreated may mean that you can’t access care immediately when it becomes crucially necessary to treat the urgent problem that has developed as appointment slots will likely be filled in the immediate timeframe.
While we don’t want to overly belabour the topic, we strongly advocate for practicing preventative care rather than getting into a situation that’s very painful and requires urgent care.
As an extra bonus, practicing preventative care for your oral health means that you’re also helping your whole body to stay healthy. See this article for more information about how a healthy mouth is part of a healthy body.