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Dentist for british expats?

Dentist for british expats?

Old Jan 20th 2015, 12:14 pm
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Post Dentist for british expats?

Hi!

I've been living in NYC for a few years, but I haven't visited the dentist yet. Can anyone give a recommendation? My teeth aren't great by American standards, but I want healthy teeth not perfect teeth.

Thanks!
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 1:59 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Did you ask friends, neighbors, co-workers for recommendations? I would start there. Choosing a dentist is a personal thing. My wife has very sensitive teeth and doesn't like my dental office where they can be a bit rough with the 6 monthly cleanings. So ask more questions than just "do you know a good dentist?"

Do you have dental insurance? If so, you can check the insurance company's web site to find a list of local dentists who are "in network" as this will keep the costs down.
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 2:28 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

What is it with American teeth anyway (and everything else, too)?

I'd expect inhabitants of a country without healthcare to be obviously rotting away and disease-ridden. But it sure doesn't appear that way - at least compared to us who have healthcare. Even those living in a country with "free" healthcare as a state religion seem to struggle.

So, what's the secret? Is it that puritan lifestyle?
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 2:35 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Originally Posted by amideislas View Post
What is it with American teeth anyway (and everything else, too)?

I'd expect inhabitants of a country without healthcare to be obviously rotting away and disease-ridden. But it sure doesn't appear that way - at least compared to us who have healthcare. Even those living in a country with "free" healthcare as a state religion seem to struggle.

So, what's the secret? Is it that puritan lifestyle?
They take dental health and dental appearance much more seriously. Nearly every American kid I know has gone through a regimen of 6 monthly checkups, flouride treatments, braces, retainers (removable and/or permanent), wisdom teeth removal, bite guards to prevent grinding, etc. As someone who didn't go through that as a kid and really should have, I am now paying the very high price for missing teeth, fillings, crowns, root canals, and failing teeth that I know I will eventually lose. I know that I am going to have to get implants at some point to replace teeth that I just can't afford to lose. It's one of my biggest regrets that I did not go through the same level of dental care that my kids have gone through.
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 2:56 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Originally Posted by amideislas View Post
What is it with American teeth anyway (and everything else, too)?

I'd expect inhabitants of a country without healthcare to be obviously rotting away and disease-ridden. But it sure doesn't appear that way - at least compared to us who have healthcare. Even those living in a country with "free" healthcare as a state religion seem to struggle.

So, what's the secret? Is it that puritan lifestyle?
There are some awful teeth in the USA. If you came here I assume you spent most of your time around middle class folks with dental plans.
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 3:29 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Originally Posted by Mrs Danvers View Post
There are some awful teeth in the USA. If you came here I assume you spent most of your time around middle class folks with dental plans.
Perhaps. But despite the hype that the middle class is in the minority, the middle class still outnumber the rich or the poor by orders of magnitude, so it's probably not all that unusual that most Americans I know would fall into that category.

I was referring to the stereotypes; A) Americans have no/poor healthcare, and B) Americans are known for having especially healthy teeth. Neither of those are a secret, and are obviously contradictory.

I find it curious because virtually all the Americans I know exhibit comparatively good overall health, which contradicts the "no healthcare, bad health habits/unhealthy diet" stereotypes.

And they also seem to consume less the alcohol and less regularly (or perhaps simply can't drink like Europeans do), and seem generally averse to smoking and other unhealthy habits that Europeans routinely engage in (except for eating, of course).

It all just seems contrary to the generally-accepted stereotypes. It seems those stereotypes are ironic, perhaps even a bit hypocritical.

Last edited by amideislas; Jan 20th 2015 at 3:41 pm.
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 3:37 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Originally Posted by MarylandNed View Post
They take dental health and dental appearance much more seriously. Nearly every American kid I know has gone through a regimen of 6 monthly checkups, flouride treatments, braces, retainers (removable and/or permanent), wisdom teeth removal, bite guards to prevent grinding, etc. As someone who didn't go through that as a kid and really should have, I am now paying the very high price for missing teeth, fillings, crowns, root canals, and failing teeth that I know I will eventually lose. I know that I am going to have to get implants at some point to replace teeth that I just can't afford to lose. It's one of my biggest regrets that I did not go through the same level of dental care that my kids have gone through.
I haven't been through that level of dental care either, neither has my husband, and yet we're both Brits aged around 40 without a single filling between us. We just have good teeth - I'm sure a huge amount of it is down to genes!
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 3:53 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Originally Posted by Mrs Danvers View Post
There are some awful teeth in the USA. If you came here I assume you spent most of your time around middle class folks with dental plans.
That is true. The US is a land of extremes in many ways. Life in the US is very different for the "haves" and the "have nots". I think the UK occupies the central part of the US bell curve on many issues. That means the UK doesn't have as much of the very best things - but it also doesn't have the very worst either. When I arrived in the US, my first boss was from the UK and had been here for a few years already. He told me that the US was a great place to live but never to forget that we're all a matter of weeks from living on the streets. It just takes something like a job loss or illness to jeopardize something like health insurance and then you're on your own. It's great that I have fast access to world class health and dental care in the US but the fact is that it comes at someone else's expense. I'm not entirely comfortable with that thought.
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 4:08 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Go to Wally World and you'll see plenty bad teeth.
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 4:09 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Originally Posted by MarylandNed View Post
That is true. The US is a land of extremes in many ways. Life in the US is very different for the "haves" and the "have nots". I think the UK occupies the central part of the US bell curve on many issues. That means the UK doesn't have as much of the very best things - but it also doesn't have the very worst either. When I arrived in the US, my first boss was from the UK and had been here for a few years already. He told me that the US was a great place to live but never to forget that we're all a matter of weeks from living on the streets. It just takes something like a job loss or illness to jeopardize something like health insurance and then you're on your own. It's great that I have fast access to world class health and dental care in the US but the fact is that it comes at someone else's expense. I'm not entirely comfortable with that thought.
I think that's a reasonable explanation, and true...

But I'm not against public healthcare, and I believe people have a right to it. I'm happy the US is moving (slowly) towards some better solutions. The NHS is great example of public healthcare - albeit it's unsustainable - but it's a great example of efficiency, and ultimately how it benefits the entire population.

The problem with the NHS is that it's "free", which means people mindlessly consume very expensive services as if it were water. Realistically, I reckon the NHS will eventually be forced to operate more like a typical European co-pay system, but it's still an excellent example.

But please - at someone else's expense? Who do you think pays for the "free" healthcare the NHS provides? The thousands of people who show up at A&E with a sniffle because the system is so overloaded that they can't get a GP appointment? You think those people pay for that? Actually, the wealthy pay for most of it, yet consume the least of those services. You can argue the indisputable benefits of the NHS, but fairness isn't necessarily one of them.
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 4:13 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Originally Posted by christmasoompa View Post
I haven't been through that level of dental care either, neither has my husband, and yet we're both Brits aged around 40 without a single filling between us. We just have good teeth - I'm sure a huge amount of it is down to genes!
True but our kids have my genes and my wife's genes. Their teeth are in absolutely amazing shape compared to their parents!
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 4:20 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Originally Posted by amideislas View Post
The problem with the NHS is that it's "free", which means people mindlessly consume very expensive services as if it were water.
Which 'mindless' people and how did you identify them?
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 4:38 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Originally Posted by amideislas View Post
Perhaps. But despite the hype that the middle class is in the minority, the middle class still outnumber the rich or the poor by orders of magnitude, so it's probably not all that unusual that most Americans I know would fall into that category.

I was referring to the stereotypes; A) Americans have no/poor healthcare, and B) Americans are known for having especially healthy teeth. Neither of those are a secret, and are obviously contradictory.

I find it curious because virtually all the Americans I know exhibit comparatively good overall health, which contradicts the "no healthcare, bad health habits/unhealthy diet" stereotypes.

And they also seem to consume less the alcohol and less regularly (or perhaps simply can't drink like Europeans do), and seem generally averse to smoking and other unhealthy habits that Europeans routinely engage in (except for eating, of course).

It all just seems contrary to the generally-accepted stereotypes. It seems those stereotypes are ironic, perhaps even a bit hypocritical.
there are large groups of people in the USA who never smoke or drink due to religious reasons. Utah for example has very low levels of alcohol consumption because mostly Mormons live there.

Orthodontics are far better here than the USA. An adult with crooked teeth screams "I grew up in poverty". A person with bad teeth is less likely to get hired to do anything and American parents know this so fork out money for the braces. In the UK bad teeth are far more acceptable. The only US public figure I can think of with bad teeth or no teeth was Barney Frank.

There are people on this very board who were unable to get health insurance prior to the affordable care act.

I doubt you visited any poverty stricken areas in the USA, nor did you hang out in any 'hoods. That doesn't mean that they doesn't exist. People often see what they wish to see.

Life expectancy in the USA is lower than in most European nations.
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 5:02 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Originally Posted by amideislas View Post
But please - at someone else's expense? Who do you think pays for the "free" healthcare the NHS provides? The thousands of people who show up at A&E with a sniffle because the system is so overloaded that they can't get a GP appointment? You think those people pay for that? Actually, the wealthy pay for most of it, yet consume the least of those services. You can argue the indisputable benefits of the NHS, but fairness isn't necessarily one of them.
I'm in the US and was talking about the US system - not the NHS. I have good health insurance and have fast access to great heath and dental care. But I know people who don't have good health insurance or have no health insurance at all. They don't seek the treatment they need because they can't afford it. The system is great for me - but it sucks for them. That's what I meant by having great care at someone else's expense.

I agree that universal health care should be a basic right in a civilized society. It's a balancing act though. You want to stop people from abusing the system while at the same time allowing people who need treatment to seek it. Much of the problem is education. People need to take some responsibility for their own health in terms of their lifestyle (diet, exercise, not smoking, not binge drinking, etc). If that doesn't happen more, the NHS is going to have trouble coping.
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Old Jan 20th 2015, 5:39 pm
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Default Re: Dentist for british expats?

Back to the question. Check your Insurance and Google local providers. Then Google the individual dentist to check their reviews online. I told my dentist I wanted healthy teeth first and foremost. Then after that I would consider more treatment. He's happy with that, I'm happy with him. If you don't like the sound of the treatment he plans to do pick a different one and try again. Mine is part of the smile network, but I imagine it's down to individual dentists.
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