I've gone most of my life without seeing a dentist. I'm turning 30 in a few months, so that's a good chunk of years I haven't been able to see anyone about my teeth. I've done my best to take care of my teeth but, of course, it doesn't seem to matter how meticulous you think you're being — something's gonna happen.
Now, I'm in a situation where I'm able to be on state insurance. Which is not the best but it's also leagues better than the absolute nothing I had before. I'm reasonably happy with the physical and mental care I've been receiving.
Dental, on the other hand…
Before I moved to the state I'm in right now, I had a chipped tooth and some decay on my top front teeth. We shelled out the money, with the help of the in-laws, to get that taken care of. Also during the check-up preceding that they mentioned I had some decay in a couple of my molars, and generally had a lot of enamel wear, due to me grinding my teeth a lot as a kid and possibly in my sleep. But I wasn't able to get anything done before moving.
Get moved, get on state insurance, get into the dentist after literally half a year of waiting just for a damn check-up…
They don't do even a fraction of what the other dentists did. They took x-rays but everything else didn't seem thorough at all. They said I have enamel wear and my teeth are shifting and crowding, which just happens as you age, I know. But they also said there's no decay in my teeth. When I said that the last dentist I was at said there was, the dentist awkwardly kind of shifted gears and said "Well, nothing I'd put fillings in right now". Then they booked me for a cleaning four months from now and sent me on my way.
I don't know. Did they do a shitty job, or were the other dentists (who did good work, I feel) trying to fleece me for money? I know the dentists I visited here are constantly overbooked. Every time I've been there (I was there once before my proper check-up cuz of agonizing tooth pain) they seem to have just brushed me off and rushed me out the door… And the place doesn't have stellar reviews, anyway.
I don't know what to do. I just want to visit a dentist, a good one, who'll do a thorough examination of my teeth and give me a fucking list of what needs doing so I can figure things out from there. But I can't even get that from the dentists my insurance stuck me with. What can I do? Dental work is so mind-mindbogglingly expensive, I can barely hope to afford the most basic things. Never mind the work I'm almost certain I need done, like getting my wisdom teeth — one in particular that's protruding and rotten which, go figure, the dentists my insurance gave me ignored — extracted.