Why do dental rebates differ from health funds?
Individual Health funds have assessors who determine their level of rebate for particular dental items. There is a balance between the rebate and the level of premium you pay, along with your type of cover and restrictions such as waiting periods, annual limits and any promotional offers. As a consumer, you choose the private health scheme that best suits your needs. Most health funds will have fixed rebates for treatments. These are generally not designed to provide full cover for dental fees or even a consistent percentage. In addition, most schemes do not include all treatment items either, with some treatments having no rebate at all.
Your contract with the health fund is between you and the fund. It remains separate from the contract you have with your dentist. There is no such thing as a ‘recognised fee’ or ‘schedule fee’ in dentistry and the ADA states categorically that any organisation that implies that their rebates are set to a percentage of a ‘schedule fee’ is misleading the public, regardless of whether it is an ‘internal’ schedule.
Does smoking affect the teeth, gums or mouth?
Most people are aware that smoking poses a serious problem to general health. What is less well known is the effect it has in the mouth. About 5 times more smokers develop oral cancers than non-smokers and invariably suffer some degree of gum or periodontal disease. There is a profound effect on the saliva and formation of the thicker ‘mucous’ form of saliva at the expense of the thinner watery ‘serous’ saliva. Some heavy smokers get decay even if they are brushing well from nicotine effects.
The main damage to the gums and mucosa, or lining of the mouth. Smokers’ gums can appear pale and thin and do not bleed readily compare to infected red and puffy gums bleeding when brushed. Unfortunately, there are only a few early warning signs. We recommend immediately stopping smoking and attend the dentist for oral screening. Regular check-ups will ensure any concerns are identified early.
How often should I have an exam, scale and clean?
You should have your teeth thoroughly examined and cleaned generally twice a year along with intra-oral x-rays depending on individual risk factors.
Regular preventative dental examinations and cleans are essential in preventing small dental problems becoming major dental issues. The dentist is checking your teeth for cavities, inspecting the health of your gums, examining your jaw action, searching for any swelling, testing your biting action and reviewing your medical history. The dentist may:
As you can see, a good dental exam and cleaning involves quite a lot more than just checking for cavities and polishing your teeth. We are committed to providing you with the best possible care, and to do so will require regular check-ups and cleanings.
Why do I need to have x-rays?
Unfortunately, the early signs of decay can not be detected by the naked eye. X-rays can pick up the early stages of tooth decay and demineralisation between teeth, allowing for a smaller filling to be done. As well as pointing out areas that require more attention cleaning than others. X-rays also allow us to see under some of your old fillings, and can show signs of “leaking” fillings, or new decay under old fillings.
These are just two of the most common reasons to take x-rays during your general examinations, and part of your continuing active maintenance and care we provide for you.
Are you able to arrange a quote for me so that I can see how much my Healthfund will cover?
Absolutely, the dentist will do a comprehensive examination and take any required x-rays to give you an accurate quote for any future appointments that you require.
If you have Medibank Private dental insurance, we will be able to swipe your card on the spot to see what you will get back from your healthfund.
Is dental treatment painful?
We always try and make your visit as comfortable as possible. With caring front staff, dentists and chair side assistants, all working to gather to provide as little discomfort as possible. We do have Nitrous Oxide (laughing gas) on site, and access to conscious sedation for more apprehensive patients where necessary, also done on site.
What does it mean when my gums bleed when I brush and floss?
This is a warning sign that gum disease is present and needs to be addressed.
This can further lead to tooth loss if left untreated. This may frequently occur in the absence of pain, making it an important first symptom in detecting the disease. Ask yourself, is it normal for your scalp to bleed when I brush my hair, even once in a while?