Two Dentists, One Dishonest Scam Artist; One Honest

win231

Well-known Member
Location
CA
I started to have pain in one tooth while eating a few days ago. I saw a dentist. They took full X-Rays.
Then the dentist told me: "I need to discuss this with you when I have enough time next week."
I said, "Well tell me the basics now."
He said, "You have many many cavities under your crowns; every tooth on the left side has decay. That's why I need time to talk about treatment options."

Since a 2nd opinion is wise, I made an appointment with another dentist for a complete exam, including another full set of X-Rays (no mention of the first dentist's diagnosis, of course). I saw her today.
She said, "You have ONE tooth in back that has decay under the crown - that's what's causing the pain. I recommend an extraction, root canal, & either a bridge or implant."
Since I found the difference in the two diagnoses hard to believe, I specifically asked her, "What about the other crowns on that side?"
She said, "All the other ones are OK; you only have decay on that one."

Well, there is no way the first dentist made a "mistake;" he's just a plain, old thief. Maybe he's trying to make up for lost income during the beginning of Covid when everything was closed.
I previously posted about similar scams from people who took their pets to the Veterinarian recently - $1,500.00 for a 3-second removal of a fox tail from her dog's eye. And the Vet wanted to keep her dog overnight.....for "Observation," for another $900.00!

Just be careful when seeing a dentist, doctor or Veterinarian; it's crazy out there.
 

Tommy

Senior Member
Location
New Hampshire
She said, "You have ONE tooth in back that has decay under the crown - that's what's causing the pain. I recommend an extraction, root canal, & either a bridge or implant."
I too am very skeptical these days when it comes to dentists.

Hope that's a typo, Win. After a tooth has been extracted there's no way to do a root canal. :ROFLMAO:

I had poor luck with a bridge, but have had great success with several implants. YMMV.
 

win231

Well-known Member
Location
CA
I too am very skeptical these days when it comes to dentists.

Hope that's a typo, Win. After a tooth has been extracted there's no way to do a root canal. :ROFLMAO:

I had poor luck with a bridge, but have had great success with several implants. YMMV.
I was confused about that, too. I'm going to ask her at my next visit.
 
Since a 2nd opinion is wise, I made an appointment with another dentist for a complete exam, including another full set of X-Rays (no mention of the first dentist's diagnosis, of course). I saw her today.
You were wise to get a second opinion. It's a good reminder for all of us.

I would report the first dentist to the board who licenses them. You have proof from both dentists (or can get it), and you will be saving a lot of people from getting scammed and from being treated by the first dentist, if the licensing board decides to do something about it.

We are lucky that we have a good dentist and a good oral surgeon. The oral surgeon is the only one in several towns around here. I thought the surgeon was old and cranky and should have retired by now. I thought he was waiting for his son to join the practice, but that's happened and the guy is still there. When I went to see him for myself (as opposed to driving other members of the family there), I discovered that he has a delightful sense of humor. He's not cranky, he's funny! I had a great time getting a molar pulled. Not many people can say that. :) I guess everyone who thinks he is cranky just doesn't get is sense of humor.

Our dentist doesn't engage in price-fixing. I had read several articles in dental magazines and journals about that problem. Ours takes cash only (or checks) and it's amazing how his prices are the lowest in town. He's honest and has a great sense of humor, too.

When we first moved to this little town, I was afraid I wouldn't get exemplary medical care. After a couple of years, things improved vastly, and I think my dentists and physicians are much better than the ones I had in the medical mecca of Boston. They have proved it.
 

win231

Well-known Member
Location
CA
You were wise to get a second opinion. It's a good reminder for all of us.

I would report the first dentist to the board who licenses them. You have proof from both dentists (or can get it), and you will be saving a lot of people from getting scammed and from being treated by the first dentist, if the licensing board decides to do something about it.

We are lucky that we have a good dentist and a good oral surgeon. The oral surgeon is the only one in several towns around here. I thought the surgeon was old and cranky and should have retired by now. I thought he was waiting for his son to join the practice, but that's happened and the guy is still there. When I went to see him for myself (as opposed to driving other members of the family there), I discovered that he has a delightful sense of humor. He's not cranky, he's funny! I had a great time getting a molar pulled. Not many people can say that. :) I guess everyone who thinks he is cranky just doesn't get is sense of humor.

Our dentist doesn't engage in price-fixing. I had read several articles in dental magazines and journals about that problem. Ours takes cash only (or checks) and it's amazing how his prices are the lowest in town. He's honest and has a great sense of humor, too.

When we first moved to this little town, I was afraid I wouldn't get exemplary medical care. After a couple of years, things improved vastly, and I think my dentists and physicians are much better than the ones I had in the medical mecca of Boston. They have proved it.
Funny you should mention reporting the first dentist to the Dental Board. I found my previous post from December last year:
(Note Paragraph 2)
People have to remember something. Like auto mechanics, dentists are in a good position to rip people off, & many are willing to in a bad economy.
Since I've had extensive dental work (30 crowns, 2 bridges & 29 root canals), I've encountered 3 scam dentists. One almost cost me my life.

1. An excellent family dentist who we trusted for several years. He replaced 4 crowns & did 5 root canals. Then, I chipped a front crown when I bit into a peach & hit the stone. He tried to convince me to replace ALL 8 front crowns ($1,400.00 each). Replacing a crown involves a lot of trauma to the teeth, jaws & gums - lots of drilling & pressure. When I asked him why he couldn't replace the one damaged crown, he tried to convince me that it would be hard to match the color. He should have known that I knew that was B.S. A digital photo is taken of the other teeth & sent to the lab to match the color, which is exactly what he did. But I never saw him again; I couldn't trust a dentist who was willing to put me through a lot of unnecessary trauma to rip me off for $11,200.00. He's pretty stupid because everyone in my family stopped seeing him.

2. When an old bridge needed to be removed to treat decay, the dentist tried to talk me into an implant instead of a new bridge.
He explained that "The bridge will fail, then I'll need an implant anyway." He didn't know I had already researched the procedure. The real reason he wanted to do an implant was because of the $6,000.00 price vs $3,000.00 for the bridge. I also explained to him that I learned that implants were not a good idea for diabetics due to the higher chance of failure. I made the mistake of allowing him to do the bridge. He deliberately made the bridge too short & I was unable to chew on that side due to the gap between the upper & lower teeth. The purpose was to teach me a lesson about not doing what he wanted. When I complained to him, he said, "I told you to get an implant."
I made a complaint to the dental board, complete with photos.
The Dental Board replied: "Although the work is poor quality, we don't get involved in such disputes unless the dentist commits a crime."
I replied, "I get it. You're not here to help patients; you're a group of fellow dentists whose function is to provide an illusion of protecting patients while you protect incompetent dentists. Thanks for nothing."
After I found another dentist to re-do the bad bridge, that dentist contacted him by phone & said, "This job is so bad, you're ruining your reputation." He was forced to refund me the $3,000.00. I had to wait a year for the area to completely heal before replacing the bridge - chewing on one side, only.

3. 4 years ago, I needed a root canal. After having many root canals, I know that constant pain after the procedure is not a good sign. I spoke to the dentist several times & he repeatedly said it was normal & prescribed opiods, which didn't help. A couple of days later, my face started swelling up & I had trouble standing & walking. I went to the ER (barely in time) & they diagnosed Sepsis--which is often fatal-- & also the infection caused my blood sugar to suddenly spike to 705. I was in the ICU for 3 days & 5 more days in the hospital. All because the dentist did a rushed, incomplete root canal, leaving infection behind, then sealing the tooth (verified by another dentist who re-did the root canal). Of course I disputed the $1,100.00 charge & he called me after I was discharged from the hospital, demanding payment. And he was very angry at my detailed review I posted to warn others.
After laughing at him, I told him "You're lucky you're still breathing; If I were you, I'd quit while you're ahead."
 
That sounds horrible, especially #3, Win. My husband filed a complaint with a medical professional licensing board and he got the same response you did in your second travesty. Maybe travesty is the wrong word. I think disaster would be better.
 

win231

Well-known Member
Location
CA
That sounds horrible, especially #3, Win. My husband filed a complaint with a medical professional licensing board and he got the same response you did in your second travesty. Maybe travesty is the wrong word. I think disaster would be better.
Many organizations are like that - providing an illusion of protecting the public when they're really protecting their own. And, they are well paid for that illusion.
With a Medical Board, it's a group of fellow doctors who pretend to oversee doctors.
With a Dental Board, it's a group of dentists who pretend to oversee dentists.
And with a Police Review/Internal Investigations Dept. it's a group of fellow officers who pretend to oversee & investigate misconduct by fellow officers.
 

win231

Well-known Member
Location
CA
That sounds horrible, especially #3, Win. My husband filed a complaint with a medical professional licensing board and he got the same response you did in your second travesty. Maybe travesty is the wrong word. I think disaster would be better.
That's why in my case #3, I didn't bother filing a complaint against that dentist; even though he almost killed me. I knew it would be a waste of time.
That's also why whenever I do need a dentist, I'm rather stressed out. There is no way to know how competent or honest he is until he gets his hands on my teeth.
 
Many organizations are like that - providing an illusion of protecting the public when they're really protecting their own. And, they are well paid for that illusion.
With a Medical Board, it's a group of fellow doctors who pretend to oversee doctors.
With a Dental Board, it's a group of dentists who pretend to oversee dentists.
And with a Police Review/Internal Investigations Dept. it's a group of fellow officers who pretend to oversee & investigate misconduct by fellow officers.
Absolutely.
 

win231

Well-known Member
Location
CA
Such experiences with corruption & fraud in the medical profession leave clues behind - and also have an effect on future medical advice - like whether or not to trust the safety & effectiveness of a Covid vaccine.
 

Fyrefox

Token fox furry
I once went to a dentist who cheated on his taxes despite, I’m sure, raking in a lot of income. Eventually the feds caught up with him, and he actually did jail time for tax evasion! I’d joke to my friends that sure, their dentist might be better than mine, but my dentist could beat up their dentist! When I eventually went to another dentist, I had to spend much time and money getting fixed things that my previous dentist had failed to do, or done badly…

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It seems to be the case with everything from dentists to auto mechanics.
Yep, dentists just cost more, and you have to live with their mistakes longer...
root canal
I have given up on root canals, they (mine anyway) never seem to last and getting them redone lasts even less well. Have had all my root canal teeth extracted, one I got replaced with an implant, the other 2 are back molars and I don't miss them.

The implant was costly and it took a while, but in the end it seems the best option, and I don't think it costs anymore than the repeated root canal fixes...
 


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