When To Consider A Full Smile Makeover

When you have a general dental problem, there’s little debate as to whether you should seek help. If you have a toothache, you need to see a dentist if you want the pain to stop and hope to save your tooth.

When people have issues with their smile’s appearance, however, they tend to agonize over whether to pursue cosmetic dentistry. Given insurance is unlikely to cover such procedures, a smile makeover can seem like a luxury. At Taylor Cosmetic Dental, we take a different view. We believe everybody should have a smile they’re happy to flash. So how do you know when it’s time to consider a smile makeover?

If your unsightly smile eroding your confidence?

When we look in the mirror–particularly that merciless rearview mirror–people tend to zero in on our flaws. Many of these perceived shortcomings are barely noticeable. Some people, however, have very real cosmetic concerns with their teeth, like:

  • A “gummy smile”
  • Bite issues
  • Chipped teeth
  • Discolored or stained teeth
  • Gaps in their teeth
  • Missing teeth
  • Noticeable metal fillings or crowns
  • Teeth that are too large or too small

Whether your oral imperfections stem from genetics, lax dental hygiene or lack of access to proper dental care, what matters is how you feel about them. Unfortunately, a third of Americans are unhappy with their smile, according to an American Association of Orthodontics study.

This dissatisfaction can lead to self-consciousness, as evinced by the 48 percent of younger survey respondents who’ve “untagged” a Facebook photo because they disliked their smile.

It’s hard to be at ease when you fear people are judging your teeth. It can cause you to suppress your smile, whether you’re chatting with friends or a co-worker calls for an impromptu group photo. Having this kind of low self-esteem makes you vulnerable to depression, according to a study by researchers at the University of Basel. With this much as stake, a smile makeover may well be more of a need than a luxury.

Is the state of your smile damaging your social life?

Of the third of Americans unhappy with their teeth, 36 percent say their social life would improve if they had a better smile. Twenty-two percent believe their love life would be enhanced by a more appealing smile.

Some of these social challenges may be a matter of confidence. To build a social circle, you need to interact with people and you’re less likely to mingle if you fear your teeth will lead to rejection.

It would be heartening to say such concerns are unfounded, but the numbers tell a different story. The number-one attribute people consider when choosing a prospective romantic partner is the state of their teeth, according to a 2013 survey. And 77 percent of women surveyed by the AAO say they’d consider dating a man with a receding hairline over one with crooked teeth.

If you believe your teeth are holding back your relationships, it may be time to consider a smile makeover.

Are smile issues impeding your career?

As if having your confidence and social life hampered by dental issues isn’t enough, an unattractive smile can also keep you from career advancement.

Fourteen percent of people dissatisfied with their smile say sub-par teeth has caused them to miss out on a better job. Given that 78 percent of Americans say people with crooked teeth are unsuccessful, it’s quite possible.

An unattractive smile can also hinder your pay grade. According to Catherine Hakim, a senior researcher with London’s Center for Policy Studies, attractive workers earn between 7 and 13 percent more than their plainer colleagues.

At Taylor Cosmetic Dental, we want you to look good, feel good and enjoy success. All this can be easier with a smile makeover, whether it’s simply a case of whitening dingy teeth or undertaking more transformational services like dental implants, veneers or laser gum contouring. If you’re ready for Dr. Taylor to revolutionize your smile, contact us today.

Direct From The Dentist: Four 2019 New Year’s Resolutions For Your Teeth

Each year, many of us make half-hearted New Year’s resolutions that we generally fail to keep. It’s time to stop the cycle of disappointment! Why not take 2019 as an opportunity to put some teeth–literally–into your self-improvement commitments?

Dedicating yourself to improved oral health involves some pretty simple steps.

If you’ve been putting off a much-needed dental checkup, it starts by making an appointment with a skilled local dentist. Here are 4 other New Year’s resolutions you can make for your teeth in 2019. With a touch of follow-through, your pearly whites will thank you.

1. Stop Cutting Corners When It Comes To Brushing

Most of us brush our teeth every day, and aim to do so twice a day. Sometimes, though, fatigue or a late night out gets in the way of our evening teeth-cleaning. Skipping evening brushing once in a blue moon won’t hurt you. If it becomes a habit, however, it can lead to problems like gum disease and tooth decay.

Brushing removes particles of food as well as plaque, a transparent layer of bacteria coating the teeth. When plaque mixes with sugar it produces acids that erode enamel, making your teeth vulnerable to cavities.

If it isn’t cleared away, this acid can penetrate the dentin of your teeth and breach the pulp. This can cause a bacterial infection or a painful abscess, both of which generally require a root canal. It’s a world of hassle that can be avoided by a two-minute process.

Skipping brushing also carries other risks. When plaque isn’t cleaned it can harden into tarter, a  crusty deposit that bonds so strongly to your teeth it needs to be removed at the dentist. Tartar traps stains, so it can cause your teeth to become discolored. It also irritates your gums, which can lead to gingivitis. Again, taking that two minutes to brush is worth your while.

2. Floss Your Teeth Every Day

We’ve all heard the old edict. To keep your teeth healthy, brush and floss your teeth every day. Many people skip the latter step though, figuring vigorous brushing serves as sufficient tooth care.

Flossing, though, is an important part of dental hygiene. By clearing out plaque and food in hard-to-reach areas between your teeth and gums, it helps ward off cavities and gingivitis.

The  best way to develop a new habit is to make it easy. There are many options when it comes to choosing the best dental floss. Whatever you settle on, place your floss near your toothbrush so you’ll be sure to remember this vital step.

3. Get your teeth professionally cleaned

Even if you brush and floss religiously, it’s important to get your teeth professionally cleaned at least twice a year.

There are a number of benefits to this routine procedure, including the fact your dental hygienist starts the process with a thorough exam of your mouth. They’ll cue you in if they detect signs of gingivitis, tooth decay or other issues with your oral health. This alone makes a professional tooth-cleaning an effective part of preventative care.

Your dental hygienist will also use a scaler to remove stubborn tartar, a task you can’t perform at home, and polish your teeth with a gritty, professional-grade paste. At the end of the treatment your teeth are likely to feel smoother and look brighter.

If you’ve been procrastinating regarding teeth-cleanings, it may be best to take the leap by picking up the phone and setting an appointment. You can also keep yourself on a schedule for regular dental care by setting a reminder on your calendar when it’s time to get your teeth cleaned.

4. Quit Staining Your Teeth

If your teeth are stained, you can get them professionally whitened, one of the many services offered by Dr. Zach Taylor and his staff at Taylor Cosmetic Dentistry. If you have habits that lead to tooth discoloration, however, you’re going to have to keep making costly and time-consuming appointments, just to keep your smile bright.

Smoking is one of the biggest culprits when it comes to yellow and discolored teeth. If cigarettes are getting you down, and making your smile brown, the advent of the new year is the perfect time to quit.

We know. Stopping smoking is easier said than done. You may, however, be able to inspire yourself. Tape a picture of a celebrity with the kind of toothy white smile you’d like to maintain on the inside of your medicine cabinet. Going from dingy to bright; now that’s smoking hot!

If you’re ready to maintain and improve your smile in 2019, Taylor Cosmetic Dentistry is ready to help you. To schedule a checkup, cleaning or procedure-or learn more about our life-changing smile makeovers–contact us for your appointment today.

Why You Should Consult A Cosmetic Dentist

If you have been considering cosmetic dental work, consulting a cosmetic can help you decide whether or not you are ready to take that step or not. Our cosmetic dentist, Dr. Taylor, has specialized in offering cosmetic dentistry services and has helped many people achieve their dream smile.

Your Eligibility For Cosmetic Dentistry Can Be Determined

When you are interested in receiving cosmetic dentistry, before anything can happen, our cosmetic dentist will need to determine your eligibility. This eligibility extends to several aspects, such as:

  • Overall oral health – Depending on what procedures you are interested in having performed, Dr. Taylor will need to determine if your oral health is in order. If there is an issue, he will outline what needs to be done to be able to do the cosmetic dental procedure you wanted.
  • Potential cosmetic choices – It can be difficult to decide on your own what cosmetic service is the right one to help you achieve what you want. By consulting with our dentist, you can be given several options to choose from to help you reach your ideal smile.
  • Payment options – Some cosmetic procedures are not covered by insurance. Dr. Taylor and our staff can help you determine how you can set up a payment plan to receive the procedures you are hoping to have done.

A Cosmetic Dentist Is More Adept At Cosmetic Procedures

Cosmetic dentistry is an art form, and Dr. Taylor has been honing his smile artistry, which you can check out in our Smile Gallery. With his help, you can achieve a seamless, beautiful smile that can look completely natural.

For example, placing dental veneers can be a complicated procedure. As Dr. Taylor is a skilled cosmetic dentist, he can use the thinnest veneers when applying veneers to a person’s teeth. By having the thinnest possible veneers applied, your smile will have a natural look, and minimal amounts of the tooth’s structure will need to be disturbed to place the veneer.

You Can Enjoy Greater Confidence With An Improved Smile

Consulting with our cosmetic dentist is an excellent opportunity for you to invest in yourself. The value of a beautiful smile goes far beyond aesthetics; by having a smile you can feel proud of showing, you can boost your self-esteem and confidence, which will affect all aspects of your life.

If you are ready to consult with Dr. Taylor and invest in your future smile, contact us to set up an appointment.

Cosmetic Dental Services You May Be Interested In:

Direct From The Dentist: Chewing Aspirin Can Destroy Your Teeth

Aspirin is sold over-the-counter and is extremely versatile, helping mitigate conditions like headache, pain, fever and swelling. It’s little wonder why it’s a popular remedy.

If you have a toothache, aspirin can help alleviate the pain. Do not, however, chew the aspirin or place a crushed aspirin on the tooth.

There’s a common myth that chewing or sucking aspirin—or pulverizing it and using it as a topical salve—gets to the heart of dental pain, yielding fast relief right where you need it. In fact, several studies indicate that chewing aspirin can cause significant damage to your teeth.

The full name for aspirin, Acetylsalicylic Acid, explains its potentially corrosive effects. It contains acid as strong as the stomach acid that pains you during heartburn, whether the bile is churning in your gut or rising into your throat and mouth.

When aspirin comes into direct contact with your teeth, it may attack the enamel. If this exposure is repeated serious erosion can occur, causing dental sensitivity or damage that needs to be treated by your dentist. Placing aspirin directly on an affected tooth can also burn the soft tissue on the adjacent cheek and gums, adding pain to pain.

When you take aspirin for a toothache or other malady, the best course of action is to swallow it whole with water. It’ll ensure that the painkilling and anti-inflammatory properties of the medicine get into your bloodstream without hurting your teeth.

An Exception To The Rule

Some people take aspirin daily to ward off heart attack, stroke or colon cancer, generally on the advice of a doctor. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends that preventative aspirin use be limited to high-risk individuals between age 50 and 69.

Regular aspirin users should take their tablets whole with water, unless they’re among the minority of people who are constitutionally unable to swallow pills. It’s said, however, that every rule has an exception and the injunction against chewing aspirin is no different.

If you fear you’re having a heart attack, take a standard dose of aspirin to minimize potentially deadly blood clotting. And by all means, chew the aspirin, which will help it work twice as fast. Time is of the element when it comes to cardiac emergencies, so you should also get yourself to a hospital.

Get Expert Advice

If you’re experiencing a toothache, consult with Dr. Taylor, who can determine whether your pain is caused by a dental infection or decayed nerve. Your dentist may say you need a root canal or other dental procedure, and that’s a tough pill to swallow. The point, however, is to have a professional treat the problem, not just the pain.

If your enamel is already damaged, whether from acid exposure or general wear and tear, you may also be helped by cosmetic dentist, Dr. Zachary Taylor of Taylor Cosmetic Dental.

Your teeth are so important. If you want “to protect and to serve” your dental health, swallow aspirin whole instead of chewing, and get yourself to the dentist.

Why Am I Being Referred To An Oral Surgeon Instead Of My Dentist For A Tooth Extraction?

Usually it’s your dentist who, after a thorough examination including x-rays, determines if any teeth need to be pulled. Common reasons for extraction include cracks or breakage, advanced decay, and impaction, a painful condition where teeth are trapped in the gums or jaw.

Teeth may also be extracted for esthetic reasons.

You may need one or more teeth pulled to address problems like overcrowding or misalignment prior to getting braces or before undertaking the kind of “smile makeover” offered by cosmetic dentists like Dr. Zach Taylor of Taylor General & Cosmetic Dentistry. A smile makeover, which aims for complete dental beautification, may include steps like contouring, whitening and the application of veneers.

What’s The Difference Between A Dentist And An Oral Surgeon?

Tooth extraction can often be done right at the dentist’s office, with the doctor using novocaine, local anesthesia or sedation to mitigate any discomfort.

If it looks like an extraction will be particularly complicated or lengthy, however, your dentist may refer you to an oral surgeon. Oral surgeons bring greater expertise and experience to bear upon tricky extractions.

They’re also qualified to administer the general anesthesia required for extensive dental surgery. For this reason, a patient with dental phobia–someone who insists on sleeping through any procedure–may be referred to an oral surgeon even for a routine extraction

The use of anesthesia carries risks including abrupt changes in your heartbeat or blood pressure. While such instances are rare, it’s reassuring to know that oral surgeons are trained in Basic Life Support.

Complicating matters

There are a number of factors that can complicate tooth extraction and which may prompt your dentist to send you to an oral surgeon. Some of these are:

  • Badly cracked or fractured teeth that are likely to break off during removal
  • Impacted teeth that are below the gum line, which necessitates cutting into the mouth to extract them
  • Entangled roots
  • Jaw tightness
  • Facial characteristics like overly large sinuses, which inhibit easy teeth removal

A dentist is also likely to refer patients needed wisdom teeth extraction to an oral surgeon.

There is often little room left in our mouths by the time this third set of molars comes in, typically between the ages of 17 and 25. As a result, wisdom teeth have an uncomfortable tendency to grow in a way that causes misalignment, overcrowding or impaction. They’re also tough and hard to get to, so general anesthetic is usually advised for their removal.

Having an extraction is not something most people are happy about. There’s a reason we say achieving something difficult is “like pulling teeth.” Luckily, though, there are dental surgeons qualified to make a dental operation as efficient and painless as possible. That’s something to smile about.

Veneers: What Are They And What Do They Do?

A smile is a sign that you’re friendly, welcoming and, most of all, feeling happy. It’s ironic, then, that so many people feel self-conscious about the state of their smile.

In fact, fully a third of Americans are unhappy with their teeth, according to a 2012 study commissioned by the American Association of Orthodontists. Of this group, 36 percent believed their social life would improve if they had a more attractive smile.

In an ideal world, this wouldn’t be the case. If, as the saying goes, you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, you certainly shouldn’t judge a person on the merits of their appearance. According to the same study, however, people really do care about looks.

Seventy-seven percent of the women surveyed said having crooked teeth is more of a turn-off than a receding hairline when it comes to a potential romantic partner. And when it comes to the workplace, 78 percent of Americans perceive people with crooked teeth to be unsuccessful.

These statistics are certainly sobering. As strange as it sounds, however, there’s never been a better time to have bad teeth. Cosmetic dentistry has come far in recent years, allowing people to address a host of issues when it comes to the look of their teeth.

One of the best routes to a beautiful smile is the introduction of porcelain veneers. A skilled cosmetic dentist like Dr. Zach Taylor of Taylor General & Cosmetic Dentistry of Billings, Montana can use this procedure to fix aesthetic concerns including:

  • Gaps caused by missing teeth or spacing problems
  • Misaligned or crooked teeth
  • Cracked or broken teeth
  • Teeth of different lengths
  • A smile that is too “gummy”

The benefits of porcelain veneers go beyond the cosmetic. They Can help improve your overall dental health by realigning your bite and strengthening and stabilizing teeth that are cracked, broken, weak or loose. Porcelain veneers can even stave off future tooth decay, a benefit everyone can applaud.

What are porcelain veneers?

A veneer is a porcelain shell, as thin as a contact lens, that’s bonded and placed over a tooth to mask any cosmetic issues. It’s a quick and effective beautifying technique.

Ever wonder how your favorite celebrity got that white smile with perfectly uniform teeth? Chances are they have veneers.

If you want to see the difference it can make, look at Tom Cruise in early movies like the 1983 hit “The Outsiders” as compared to more recent films. His smile has gone from snaggle-toothed and discolored to dazzling, with veneers playing a large part in the improvement. It’s safe to say that cosmetic dentistry has been helpful in his meteoric transformation from bit actor to leading man.

Veneers are not a one-size-fits-all proposition

A reputable cosmetic dentist knows every face and every smile is different and approaches your veneers accordingly. For instance, at Taylor General & Cosmetic Dentistry they take photos of you and then use software to customize veneers complementing your appearance.

Dr. Taylor and his crew then prepare your teeth with methods like pre-contouring and create a prototype of your veneers. You are presented that same day with veneers made of a temporary material. In some cases, patients who are dentist-averse opt to forgo the teeth preparation. Unless you present with alignment problems or certain other issues, your cosmetic dentist can install no-prep veneers.

It takes a few weeks for a ceramist to make your custom veneers. In the meantime, the prototype veneers let you rock your new smile right away and report if any improvements need to be made.

Once your porcelain veneers are ready, it’s time for a bonding procedure where the veneers are fused to your teeth. After that, even if you’ve spent your whole life embarrassed of your smile, you’ll be delighted to “grin and bare it.”

Direct From The Dentist: Preventing The Spread Of Illness

While most people consider fall and winter to be the more common illness-spreading seasons, the truth is that it is distressingly easy for illness to proliferate. No matter the season, if preventative measures aren’t taken, you could be trapped inside during the summer with a nasty bout of bronchitis or some other highly infectious illness.

Here at Taylor General & Cosmetic Dentistry, we wanted to focus in on oral illnesses, some which will only affect you as it spreads as well as covering orally-spread illnesses. We want to offer advice from our dentist on how to prevent the spread of both of these types of oral illnesses.

Dentists Can Be First To Identify Several Illnesses

It surprises some people when their dentist is the first medical professional to identify their illness, perhaps because there is no dentistry service labeled “Illness Assessment”. Yet, if you come in for your biannual dental cleaning or any other dental service we offer, our dentist has the training to identify when something is wrong with your oral health. Some of the illnesses our dentist might recognize are:

  • Oral cancers – There are several types of oral cancers which can go unnoticed while being masked by other symptoms.
  • Leukemia – Some common signs of leukemia are visible to dentists, such as canker sores, bloody gums, and swollen lymph nodes.
  • Diabetes – Inflamed gums which tend to bleed and chronically bad breath no matter how consistent your oral care can be some signs of diabetes which a dentist can identify.
  • Oral infection – Often an oral infection can hide out of sight and may cause people to think they have the flu. Yet, an untreated oral infection can become an abscess which can lead to serious complications. Our dentist will be able to identify and treat an oral infection so you don’t suffer more serious consequences.

Ways To Prevent Outside Illnesses And Infections

Outside of preventing personal illness spreading, there are outside illnesses which you can prevent from spreading to you. While you can’t stop catching all illnesses, there are some steps you can take to increase your chances of staying healthy.

  • Sanitize public equipment prior to use. One example of this is wiping down a public computer keyboard before you use it.
  • Always wash your hands after using the restroom.
  • Refrain from personal contact (hugs, handshakes, etc) during flu season as much as possible.
  • Stay hydrated to support proper homeostasis.

Also, you don’t have to skip your dentist appointment because you feel a head cold coming on. As long as you are not coughing and no airways are obstructed, you should be fine to come in for your dental appointment. To set up an appointment with Dr. Taylor, feel free to call or use our “Request An Appointment” form online.

Does Tooth Whitening Toothpaste Work?

Going off of a tooth whitening commercial, you would think the advertised toothpaste could transform any smile, no matter its current condition. But, clever marketing aside, our dentist and staff at Taylor General & Cosmetic Dentistry have often been asked whether whitening toothpaste actually works.

What Tooth Whitening Toothpastes Can Do

Whitening toothpaste cleans the teeth and helps remove bacteria-encouraging food particles. But the actual whitening properties are underwhelming.

At best, a tooth whitening toothpaste can remove surface stains on the teeth. These stains are usually left by coffee, tea, wine, and staining foods such as beets, wine, coffee, and blackberries. If the discoloration you want to whiten is below the surface of the tooth, then whitening toothpaste can do nothing to change the color.

Potential Problems With Teeth Whitening Toothpaste

Depending on what is in the whitening toothpaste, the act of using the whitening toothpaste can actually harm your teeth. Some ways they harm are:

  • Abrasive particles are sometimes included in whitening formulas, which can scrub down the enamel of the teeth and actually reveal more of the yellow root of the tooth below the surface.
  • Some people want the whitening toothpaste to work, so they brush their teeth too hard. This can also damage the enamel of the teeth and can inflame the gums.
  • Not all toothpaste brands are regulated by the FDA, and some companies take advantage of people’s desire for whiter teeth and produce substandard toothpaste products. These products may not even clean your teeth effective as well as fail to whiten your teeth.

More Effective Teeth Whitening Options

Rather than take chances with different kinds of whitening toothpaste and spending time and money on the different brands, there are more effective teeth whitening options our dentist can offer you. A few of the popular teeth whitening options offered at our dental office are:

  • Fitted whitening trays – Superior to over-the-counter whitening trays, our fitted teeth whitening trays are formed to your teeth so they can be whitened evenly. Also, our dentist can access whitening formula which is stronger than the ones available over-the-counter.
  • Laser teeth whitening – Using whitening gel and dental lasers, see your teeth whiter faster within a 15-20 minute treatment session.
  • Veneer application – Porcelain veneers can cover discolored teeth as well as correct other cosmetic dental issues. The color of the veneers can be made to match your preferred tooth color.

If you are ready for whiter teeth to cap off a perfect smile, then contact us today for a consultation with our dentist.

Practicing Dentistry As It Should Be

Do you remember when your family physician would visit your home with his or her little black bag, stethoscope around the neck, visiting in the late hours of the night to take care of you? A families doctor used to be a family friend, not just a doctor. The doc would know your kids’ names and what was going on in the family. He or she would spend the time necessary to really take care of you and get to know you. Getting to know you actually used to be an important part of taking care of you. Where did that type of medicine go? This beautiful medical service has shifted to a bloated, insurance driven, not-enough-time-to-chat mammoth of a problem.

Well…why is a dentist talking about this? Because dentistry is becoming the same thing. What used to be a beautiful, small private practice service industry, has now become an impersonal, large multi-doctor, insurance driven, and very expensive commodity business. Patients have become a means to paying off terribly high student loans and expensive offices and equipment. The future of my dental profession isn’t looking pretty. I think you know what I’m talking about.

We as dentists have done a disservice to you, the patient. Our mentality of treating our patients like our family has been erased by a mentality of seeing patients as a means for profits and luxury. Much of the dentistry done today doesn’t need to be done, but it is because insurance covers it. How do I know this? Because I used to practice this way, and I go to the dental meetings and talk with the local dentists as well as other dentists around the country and world. This is my profession- it’s my experience. But this experience has woken me up and I’ve changed the way I think and practice. I treat my patients based on THEIR needs, not mine, while not allowing a disinterested insurance company to dictate their diagnosis and treatment.

Why am I writing this? Because it’s up to us dentists to help shift the dental culture we’ve created, and get back to putting first, truly putting first, the interests and needs of our patients. Dentistry has been turned on its head and it’s up to us dentists to turn it back right.

We live in an AMAZING time of medical technological advancement! What we know now is going to help us cure dental diseases, I’m confident of that. But during dental disease creates a little conflict of interest for us dentists, right? That’s not how I see it. We are learning more and more about how the mouth is the gateway to the body, or how oral health affects our whole body health. I see us becoming a more integral part of comprehensive health care in the future. Did you know that bacteria from cavities and gum disease are also found in the blood clots that cause heart attacks and strokes? Did you know that a diabetic that takes care of their mouth has an easier time managing their diabetes? Did you know that braces can GREATLY decrease your risk for sleep apnea? We are at a very exciting time. And too many dentists just have their heads down drilling and filling away. Advanced dental education, far beyond what you get at dental school, helps me connect the dots and gives me the tools and training I need to advance with the changing technology and paradigm. We can turn dentistry back right again by helping our patients know that their mouth is directly linked to their body.

In our office we feel dentistry is practiced as it should be. You, the patient, are the focus. Yes we take insurance, but we don’t allow the insurance company to dictate your diagnosis or treatment. Disease dictates diagnosis, and the patient dictates whether or not to undergo treatment. Your authority to choose for yourself the best course of action is paramount to your health. We don’t hijack that authority. We view ourselves as friends that, if asked, can help you make decisions. I, as the doctor, am the referee- I call it as I see it. The ball is then in your court to decide how to proceed. I don’t employee pushy front desk personnel whose only job is to “close the deal.” You’ll never leave our office without knowing how much something is going to cost. And we spend the time needed to answer your questions about the treatment options you have.

We take all insurance. Most of our patients have some form for a dental benefit. But because I’m not a contracted dentist for most plans, the insurance can’t tell me or you what to do. PPO plans will still pay your entire yearly dental benefit, even if I’m not on the contracted list of dentists. Again, most of our patients use their dental benefit with us. But our goal is for you to not have to use your dental benefit, other than for routine cleanings and exams. So many patients are tired to having fillings done every year and crowns done every five years. They tired of root canals, extractions, and implants. I would be too. We feel we have the answers to get our patients healthy and stay healthy. That’s empowering to both you and me.

At our office you’ll feel a difference because our mentality has shifted back to where it should be- to the patient. Honesty, integrity, gentleness, and kindness is our mantra here. You’ll be greeted with a beautifully warm smile, and leave with your questions answered, empowered to make choices based on your needs and timing. Come see us!

Dr. Taylor

Dental Insurance? The truth that most don’t explain.

Insurance? Absolutely, we take it. We just don’t allow your insurance to dictate your diagnosis and treatment.

I hear too many friends and others around town express that they feel they’re getting the dental runaround- their questions aren’t answered, they’re pushed through so fast they wonder what’s going on, and they don’t even see the same doctor every time. This isn’t how dentistry should be. What most patients don’t realize is these problems stem from the office being insurance driven. Let me explain what I mean. Grab a cup of coffee, this is gonna be good!

Often times an employer will bring on a dental benefit from an dental insurance company as a perk of employment. If you want good employees, you better give them benefits, right? Well, these benefits cost the employer money. The good dental plans cost more, the crappy plans cost less. That’s just how it is. So the dental insurance companies form dental plans to pitch to the employers in certain areas, hoping for their business. Sadly, often what determines the plan the employer chooses is the cost, so often the crappy plans are the ones you get when you get hired. But it’s something- it’s definitely a benefit to help you pay for your dental care, which is great! It’s certainly better than nothing.

The issues with these lower cost plans is they reimburse the dentists much less than the higher cost plan. So a crown done on a low cost plan may get the dentist $500, whereas the same crown done on a high quality plan may get the dentist $1000. This is not uncommon. So what does that mean for the dentist and what does that mean for you, the patient? Well, the dentist who is a preferred provider for the low cost plan, has to see twice as many patients as the dentist who isn’t a preferred provider for that plan, just to make the same amount of money. These dentists have to work faster, much faster, in order to make a profit. And because they don’t get paid as much per procedure, they usually aren’t able to afford paying for higher quality staff, materials, and technology. The crowns I get from my lab from either California or here is Montana cost almost 4 times as much as a cheap crown I could get from a “mega-lab” or from China. This is just one small example. So for the dentist, life looks much different if he/she is in deep with the low cost plans as a preferred provider. The main difference is TIME. They don’t have the time to sit down with you for an hour and explain why you need $3000 of dental work. They simply can’t do it and still make a profit. How do I know this? Because this is how I used to work. For the first three years out of dental school that was my life. I had to work fast, I didn’t have time to sit and chat, and the insurance price I would get would dictate where I would send a crown to be made, what material I would use to do a filling, and in the end, how much I could pay my assistant. Hindsight is 20/20- it’s easy for me to see now how insurance companies dictated almost everything in my office.

Well…that’s not how I practice any more. I honestly don’t even think about insurance now; I’ve realized my patients are just that- MY patients, not the insurance companies. And who knows my patients best? I do. I no longer allow the insurance companies to have so much influence in my practice and between me and my patients.

So what does this mean for you, the patient? First, it means that you will be able to make decisions without the insurance company trying to make those decisions for you. Second, it means that you’ll get our full attention here. Because I don’t have to see as many patients, I’m not juggling 2-4 patients at one time. I see one patient, start to finish, and then see the next patient. And third, it means your treatment will be done by a highly trained doctor and staff, well researched and highly successful dental materials and technology, and get dental care that will last 15-20 years instead of 5-10 years.

Dr. Taylor

MAKE AN APPOINTMENT:406.652.9204