Monday, November 30, 2015

Member Question: Why is my dentist no longer taking the plan?

Questions From Our Members

This question has been asked by several members:

I've been going to a dentist on the plan for awhile now and I have always been happy there.  I got this letter in the mail from Savon saying that my dentist has decided to quit participating in the plan.  Why did they decide to quit and what can or should I do?

Savon’s Answer

There are a number of reasons that dental facilities discontinue their participation in a dental plan:

Greed:  The plan has sent them a lot of patients and now they feel they can make more money off the same patients if they drop the plan.

Compliancy:  The dental office feels that they have built such a good rapport with their patients that even if they drop the plan that the patient is on, the patient(s) will stay with the dental office and pay the higher price.

Plan fees are too low:  The fees that the plan allows the facility to charge its members are so low that the dental office is losing money treating the plan members.

Not enough usage:  The plan simply does not send the dental facility enough patients to make it worth participating any longer.

Other reasons:

-The facility has started its own “in house” plan.

-The facility was sold and the new doctor does not wish to participate.

-The patients that the plan sends to a facility are only interested in the “free” services that the plan offers.

In most cases the bottom line is greed.  One dental office that recently discontinued participation simply stated that:

“We don’t need the plan anymore.  We can give your members a 25% discount off our own fee.  They will stay with us because they are comfortable with us and we’ll make more money.”

Savon Dental Plan strives to maintain a fair and balanced Schedule of Benefits.  Every preferred provider is given an opportunity to give us their input as we adjust the Schedule of Benefits.  Every dental facility on this plan has passed a very strict credentialing process.  Each facility is monitored for complaints on a regular basis by our Director of Provider Relations and most of the facilities are visited every 6 to 8 weeks by our field liaison.

The only way to combat greed and compliancy is to refuse to accept it.  If enough members choose a new dental facility, it will hit the old dental facility where it hurts the most, in the schedule and in the wallet.  The moral here is:  You don’t have to stay with that facility and pay higher prices for the exact same quality treatment that you will receive at any other dental facility that participates on Savon Dental Plan.

If you have received one of these letters and have any questions, concerns or need help in selecting a new dental facility, please call our Customer Care Center at 800-809-3494. Our office hours are Monday thru Thursday 9am to 4pm m.s.t. and Friday 9am to Noon.  Our phones are monitored live after hours and on weekends and holidays.

(the content of this blog was originally posted in our November 2015 Newsletter in the article "Here's Your Answer")

Video Blog: Santa Came Savon Dental Plan!

So I was shooting a video to help promote our Savon Online Store and the wonderful things that we have available there when all of the sudden Santa walked through the door. He came by and dropped is bag off at our office and he left something in it for you! Check out what he left at

Here is the videos of his visit!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Is Your Thanksgiving Feast Good For Your Teeth?

Thanksgiving is right around the corner! While you are enjoying that wonder feast, I'm pretty the last thing on your mind is, if these delicious foods are good for your teeth. RIGHT??

The following information is brought to you by the American Dental Association (ADA).

  • Turkey
    • Good: Turkey is packed with proteins.
    • Bad: Turkey get stuck in between your teeth, so make sure to floss!
    • Mouth Healthy: Yes, Eat up!!
  • Cranberry Sauce
    • Good: It's Tasty.
    • Bad: This is sticky, acidic and can temporarily stain teeth.
    • Mouth Healthy: If eaten alone, No. Due to the sweetness and acidity, this should be eaten with other foods.
  • Yams
    • Good: Rich in Vitamins A and C.
    • Bad: Candied yams call for marshmallows which can damage teeth since it tends to stay on your teeth longer.
    • Mouth Healthy: If candied, enjoy in moderation and drink plenty of water to help wash way food particles.
  • Green Bean Casserole
    • Good: Green beans, mushrooms and onions are healthy.
    • Bad: Tends to be stick and they been may get stuck in the teeth.
    • Mouth Healthy: Yes, Dig in.
  • Mashed Potatoes
    • Good: Potatoes contain Vitamin C, B6 and Potassium.
    • Bad: Starchy, and cavity causing bacteria loves the sugar that makes starch.
    • Mouth Healthy: If covered with gravy, No. The health benefits are diminished to some extend .
  • Pumpkin Pie
    • Good: Pumpkins contain Vitamin A, which helps keep your gums healthy and builds the hard outer shell of the teeth.
    • Bad: Contains added sugar plus whatever whipped topping you are using.
    • Mouth Healthy: This is usually a once a year treat so dish it out after dinner!
On Thanksgiving Day, try to avoid foods that contain excess sugar as much as you can, do not snack often. Try to brush your teeth in between snacking and sugary deserts. Consider using a mouth rinse that has fluoride in it and remember to see your dentist on a regular basis.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

There Is Natural Help For Receding Gums!

Do you suffer from receding gums?  You're not alone. A good percentage of the population does.  The problem is that the dental procedures to fix the problem are expensive and can be painful. If you're like me, I try to cut costs and remedy many problems by myself. I've found that the internet is a useful tool!  

Receding gums can be caused by many different things.  Brushing too hard, grinding your teeth, gingivitis, periodontal disease and even heredity can contribute.  But, take heart! There are things you can do at home to prevent and even help slow the process.  The following are some home remedy ideas that I've gathered from the web:

  • Oil pulling -       Sesame oil is an anti-inflammatory and may possibly heal cavities!                                       Coconut oil cleans the mouth of harmful bacteria and is said to aid in the                              regrowth of gum tissue.
  • Clove oil -         Used as a mouth rinse it is an excellent disinfectant and has anti-                                            inflammatory properties.  It is also widely known to temporarily reduce                                  the pain of a toothache.
  • Green Tea    -   More as a preventative: Drink a cup every morning to help remove                                        bacteria and free radicals which can cause gingivitis. 
  • Aloe Vera Gel - You can actually brush your teeth with this for a healing benefit or mix it                                 with water as a mouth rinse.  Probably one of the better options, in my                                   opinion.  
Please note: Prevention is always the best way to go and it is always recommended that you see a dentist at the first sign of a problem!  

Keep Smiling!   

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Prepping Children For The Dentist

Have a young child that needs to visit the dentist, but worried how they will handle the visit?

Preparation is the best method when it comes to going to the dentist.

Here are a few tips on preparing your child for their first trip:

  • Choose a dentist wisely - Seek out dentist that will fit your child's needs. You may want to consider a periodontist (pediatric dentist) these dentist specialize in children dentistry and usually their offices are very inviting to children such as they have games while waiting, a theme throughout the office. etc.
  • Let them observe - Take your child to one of your dental appointments and let them watch. The best observation is a dental cleaning!
  • Sunglasses - This will help keep the bright out of there eyes and allow them to keep their eyes open to reduce anxiety.
  • Trust the staff - This is not the first time they have worked with children, they will have tricks up there sleeve to help make the experience go smoothly. 
Always remember that the office staff wants you to have a great experience!

Friday, November 13, 2015

So What Exactly Are Teeth Made Of?

We take our teeth for granted, really. It's just something we're born to have and other than the occasional maintenance or a throbbing toothache, we don't really think about what's in a tooth!  In case you ever wondered, here it is! 

Our teeth are meant to be permanent structures. They are made up of four things;

1. Enamel - This is the hard white outer coating of your tooth.
2. Dentine - This is just inside the enamel. It's a yellow bone (connected to your jaw bone) that has nerves inside it. 
3. Pupil - At the center of your tooth, the pulp contains important blood vessels and nerves.
4. Cementum - This is what covers the root of your tooth (the part of the tooth that is below the skin), and a periodontal ligament attaches the cementum to the jawbone.

Did you know the enamel in your teeth is the hardest stuff in your body? Even more so than your bones. And when you get a cavity it is actually a hole in the enamel that leaves the dentin exposed. The pupil is the main message center to the brain. This is what tells your tooth to ache when the cavity gets too deep! 

Now you know!  

Keep smiling! 

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

How Forensic Dentistry Works.

I personally find it amazing how a forensic dentist can identify a person just by using dental records.

The deceased people who are most often identified through dental records are those who were victims of fires, this is do to the fact that the tooth enamel is hardest substance of the human body and can sustain temperatures of more than 2,000 degrees. Teeth that have been through this kind of heat can be very fragile and could shrink but if used carefully they can still be used in identification.

To identify a person the forensic dentist needs a copy of the deceased persons dental records. In case of multiple people the forensic dentist receives a list of possible dental records and compares them to the teeth in hopes to find a match. A forensic dentist that is working on a corps were the teeth are still in tacked requires them to work in the morgue. The best way to compare teeth is through X-Rays, but sometimes those aren't available, so notation on the members charts can also tell the dentist if they are a match.

Identifying a person without any dental records can be very difficult but things such as broken teeth, missing teeth or anything that may be recognizable by family and friends can be helpful. Also things about a persons lifestyle can be helpful in determining the deceased person such as if they smoked a pipe or was a bagpipe player they will have a distinctive wear pattern.

In addition to dental records, the forensic dentist can pull DNA from the pulp located in the center of the tooth. Unlike the enamel, the pulp can become damaged.

Dental Identification is often the last resort in trying to identify a deceased person.

*Information was found here

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Could Your Toothache Really Be an Earache or Something Else?

Yes, it can! Did you know that toothaches can have a variety of causes and not all are actual dental events?
Impacted wisdom teeth can cause ear pain and ringing in the ears, but in contrast, an ear infection can feel like a toothache. Also, sinusitis and pressure in the nasal cavities and the air passages of the cheek bones can cause pain in the jawbone that may feel like a toothache. Many people do not know that angina pain and some heart ailments can also cause jaw pain and/or tooth pain as well. Occasionally, toothaches are caused by nerve ailments and neuralgia. TMJ (temporomandibular joint dysfunction) can also cause chronic pain that is not related to a toothache. It's never a bad idea to check with a doctor as well as a dentist in the event of unexplained tooth pain. It's all in the diagnosis!

Keep Smiling!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Eating Disorders And Oral Health

Many Americans are affected by eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia and binge eating. It is often the pain and discomfort related to dental complications that first causes patients to consult with a health professional. Dentists are often the first health professionals to observe signs and symptoms of eating disorders.

Anorexia-Involves an extreme fear of weight gain or a dread of becoming “fat” even though these individuals are markedly underweight.

Bulimia-Discrete periods of overeating (binge eating) which may occur several times a week or at its most severe, several times a day. This leads to self-vomiting.

Binge Eating-Binge eating may involve rapid consumption of large amounts of food with a sense of loss of control. Feelings of guilt and shame may lead to repeated episodes of binge eating.

Eating disorders that may include frequent vomiting and may result in nutritional deficiencies can also affect oral health. Salivary glands may become enlarged. Lips are often red, dry and cracked. Lesions may appear on oral soft tissues which may also bleed easily. There may be changes in the color, shape and length of teeth. Teeth may become sensitive to hot and cold foods.

Monday, November 2, 2015

November Newlsetter

Another great way to see what's going on here at Savon Dental Plan is by reading our Monthly Newsletter! This month's issue includes:

Be sure to check it out by clicking on one of the topics above or by clicking here
This newsletter is also available in an email and mail out format. You can sign up to receive our monthly newsletter at by clicking here.