Imagine this. Your car has been making a strange knocking sound every time you make a right turn. Being the responsible car owner that you are, you take your vehicle to the nearest garage to find out what the problem is. After telling the mechanic the symptoms that you’ve noticed, he quickly tells you that it’s a problem with the engine and that after parts and labor, you’re looking at a $1,000 job. In your gut, you’re fairly certain that it’s not an engine issue. What would you do? Before dropping that kind of cash, most people would seek a second opinion. Your car, after all, is a very important and necessary possession and while you know you need to fix it, you’d like to make sure the job is done right and the price you’re paying is fair. The scenario makes perfect sense, right? You would expect anyone to get a second opinion on any work that will be done on such a prized possession. Shouldn’t the same be true for other important work, like medical procedures for example? Shockingly though, a recent poll found that the majority of American adults would not seek a second opinion for medical procedures, and specifically for dental work.
The survey involved over 2,000 individuals and was conducted online by a market research firm on behalf of Align Technology, a medical device company known for their invisible orthodontic system, Invisalign. The results, recently published in a Dental Tribune article, were shocking. 70% of the participants said they would seek a second opinion for home repair and improvement while about 50% said they would for major car repair. But only 17% said they would seek any additional opinions for recommended medical procedures and a surprising 6% admitted they’d want a second opinion for dental work. Specifically, the survey found that less than 25% would shop around for teeth straightening options while only 10% would seek a second opinion for oral procedures, like root-canal therapy, even though they can be a bit costly and are often fairly invasive. Given how valuable our mouths and teeth are, these statistics simply shocked me.
Dr. Luis Sanchez, of Miami Dental Sedation Spa, recently published an article about the importance of getting a second opinion. Read his piece, “Has Your Dentist Ever Sent You Away,” and hear his opinion on why working with a dentist you trust is so important.