How to make dental treatments gentle on your pockets: The Hontistry Way
Would like to start this article by bringing to light a very nice & old Chinese saying. It goes like this – A good doctor is one who will work towards eliminating his own profession. I read this 23 years back & since then I am a fan of this Chinese saying. Today, I want to tell you all one thing – I feel very happy to tell my some of my patients at least that they do not need any treatment & their mouth is healthy & fine. I dream of a day when all my patients will become healthy but visit us only for preventive procedures & when this happens, they will be also be spending less money on their dental health. While I wait to see such days in my patients’ lives, I would like to write about few best practices, which will help you to spend less money at a dental clinic.
A. Good oral hygiene routine
The 1st best way to save money on your dental treatments is the daily care of your teeth and its health at home, which is critical in staying healthy and saving money. It is important to ensure that you brush your teeth twice a day using a soft bristled toothbrush & good toothpaste. You should change your toothbrush every 6 months (some good quality brushes can last 12 to 18 months, though not many people tell you this) or whenever the bristles would become worn. You should also floss or use interdental cleaning aids daily according to the dentists’ advice whenever needed.
B. Routine dental appointments
The 2nd best way may sound strange, but to save good amount of money on dental care is by attending for regular, routine dental appointments. Studies have shown that for every rupee invested in preventative oral health care, you can save between few 1000s to few lakh rupees that might get spent over more complicated treatments.
Skipping dental cleanings and check-ups is a false notion of saving money. Gum disease in the initial stages & dental decay is almost entirely preventable with regular home & professional preventive care protocols. Dentists will be able to identify problems early reducing the need for extensive or expensive treatments. Spending a little on check-ups and cleanings will save you a lot in the long run. Just remember: the bill for filling a cavity is much easier to swallow than the bill for a root canal, crown or tooth removal. Whenever required we will advice you on proper diet & other preventive protocols to be followed at home or at clinic.
C. Seek best quality treatment
The 3rd best way – I will reveal a secret here, which is known to all but not obvious to them.
Hence, it is quite common for most patients to fall trap for economical treatments where they end up getting lower quality treatments. What follows after this, is that, the lower quality treatments won’t last longer & they become repeat patients for the same procedures spending more money over a period of time, compromising their dental health & many a times creating irreparable problems. So, over a period of time they end up spending more, though they may be spending in small increments each time (It is equivalent to paying EMIs). So, the wise thing is to get good quality treatment done, even if it costs a little more & for those who can’t afford, good idea is to choose EMIs over quality treatments instead of paying small increments over cheaper treatments. So choose a place which offers EMIs & get a durable treatment, which costs less over a period of time, saving money, time, energy & stress too.
The 4th best way – If you need more dental work than you can afford, ask the dentist which procedures need to be completed right away and which can be put off for a little while. Then work out a treatment plan based on needs. The dentist may also be able to offer some temporary fixes to keep your teeth healthy while you save some money for the permanent fix.
E. Ask your dentists for Membership Plans
The 5th best way is taking some Membership Plans at a clinic (If available), which helps you to spend less on your routine dental treatment. It should also cover many or all your preventive dental care. Getting into a good membership plan might help you save 5% to 30% of your money on select procedures. If you buy a membership plan you will be more committed come for regular check-ups & preventive services rather than curative Procedures. This will help you save more money in the long run.
Whenever, you focus on preventive / maintenance care, money gets saved automatically.
F. Ask for EMI Payment Plans
The 6th best way – If you are not having the money to get the treatment done, postponing the treatment will only help you to postpone your expenses for a future time – However remember, youwill be spending more as you are only postponing the treatment & not the disease progression that continues in your mouth. Knowing this problem, some caring dentists would be offering some EMI payment plans. Askyour dentist for such plans & select the suitable ones to fund your treatments. You can borrow amounts above Rs.5000 subject to approval of EMI within 10 minutes of application & document submission. By doing this you will be rectifying the problem immediately & spend less in long run.
G. Check out for discount days or camp days
7th best way to save money is to ask for dental camp or discount days, which will be run on fixed days in a month. You tend to save 5 to 25% on select procedures on these days & might also get some free consultations too.
H. Options for BPL (Below Poverty Line) card holders
There will be few days in a month or a quarter where we offer up to 50% off on select procedures with an upper capping limit per patient for up to 3 patients.
You may even ask about other economical places to visit to get your treatments done.
So, make use of these options to save money, but do not postpone important treatments. It is definitely not the wise way to save money.