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What is the Difference Between Routine, Complex, and Major Dental Procedures?

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There are a few obvious observations when it comes to dental insurance. It can be seen that annual cleanings will cost a patient much less than what a root canal or a filling would cost.

This is because insurance organizations classify dental services and procedures into three key categories – routine, complex, and major dental procedures.

These procedures and services are categorized based on how detailed, elaborate, and expensive they are to perform. All these services have their own time and place. Regular check-ups can help a patient avoid major or complex procedures and maintain good oral health.

Routine Dental Procedures

A dentist relies on or performs routine or preventive care to preserve and safeguard the oral health of patients. Some of such services range from cleanings to X-rays and mouthguards, all employed to identify, prevent, or treat problems early on.

Routine services help to ensure that small problems do not turn into a state that would warrant additional expensive procedures. This helps to save time and money for the patient. Such services generally require a copayment.

As the term suggests, routine services aid in managing sound oral health and can even detect potential issues at the onset, helping the patient avoid pain or money.

Routine dental services include examinations, x-rays, consultations, cleaning, scaling, and minor services such as fillings.

Complex Dental Procedures

A branch of dentistry that deals with and takes care of the supporting structures around the tooth is called periodontics. This includes the bone, gums as well as connective tissues in the mouth and all potential diseases associated with them.

When the nerves of the tooth get damaged or diseased, then treatment by an endodontist may be called for. Root canal therapy is a regular kind of endodontics that a patient might require.

Jaw injuries, oral surgery, and root canal treatment are typical complex procedures.

Major Dental Procedures

  • Surgical procedures that include implants are termed major dental services. These procedures and services are intense, time-consuming, and cumbersome as they need to tackle problems that could have resulted from preventive care at an earlier stage.
  • As a general rule, any treatment that needs anesthesia or surgery can be categorized as a major dental procedure. An orthodontic procedure also falls under the same category.
  • Major dental services include crowns, bridgework, veneers, implants, and dentures. Wisdom teeth treatment can be a routine or major procedure based on the kind of work being performed by the dentist.
  • A patient must evaluate all dental plans carefully as each can be different. All plans might not cover all procedures. Maintaining oral health at all times is paramount to utilizing insurance effectively while knowing how dental services and procedures are classified.