I have been offered an amazing opportunity but it would require me to move to another state. The problem is I am about five months into the procedure, which means I have not had the dental crowns placed on my implants. My dentist said there needed to be a healing time, but I feel fine. Could I just go ahead and get the crowns placed? If not, will I need to fly back to this state to get them done or can another dentist do the remainder? If I end up needing another dentist to do this, will I be able to get a refund on the portion that is not done? They had me pay up front. If so, will I owe my dental insurance money for the part they shelled out?
First, allow me to congratulate you on whatever your new amazing opportunity is. Yeah!! Second, you ask some great questions. Let me start with whether you can just go ahead and get the dental crowns placed on now before you move. Though I am thrilled to hear you are feeling well, the time between dental implant placement and dental crown placement is not just about giving yourself time to heal. It is also about osseointegration. This is the integration of the bone in your jaw with the dental implants. Without that, your dental implant will not be secure and additional pressure of the crown will loosen it and lead to dental implant failure.
I do not believe you are far enough along in the healing process for osseointegration to have adequately taken place, but if you want to have a CT scan done to check the progress, I cannot imagine your dentist would object. Because of the need for osseointegration, I am going to rule out the “get it done now” option.
While you could fly back and have your dentist finish, you do not necessarily have to. If you absolutely love your dentist and have the means, then, yes, you could fly back just to have the crowns placed. However, if that isn’t an easy option for you, your dentist can provide whomever you end up with all his procedural notes as well as any diagnostics you have had done. In fact, your dentist is under an ethical obligation to do so. If you decide to go that route, you should ask your dentist if he has a recommendation for anyone in the area. That will help you cut down on your research.
Getting a Refund
Dental implants are generally charged in two phases: the implant phase and the crown phase. If your dentist charged you for both up front, then, yes, they will be happy to issue you a refund for the crown portion. You do not have to worry about the insurance because even if you paid all up front, they can’t bill the insurance for the crown part until that portion is completed.
Good luck on your new adventure!
This blog is brought to you by Des Moines Dentist Dr. Phelan Thomas.