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Is There an Affordable Dentist in Calgary?! Models Asks.

Recently, Alberta's dentistry prices have been skyrocketing, leaving many patients wondering if they could even continue to receive dental care within their province. Since 1997, the Alberta Dental Association and College (ADA&C) has not published a dental fee guide, so dentists have been able to offer unregulated, and often unreasonable prices for their services. Throughout Alberta, the city of Calgary seems to have been hit particularly hard; Calgary dentist fees are not only expensive, they're unpredictable.

CBC News of Calgary published an article in 2016, detailing their study to ascertain prices for dental procedures at different practices throughout the city. However, after calling 12 offices and asking about three different procedures, very little conclusive information about actual Calgary dentist fees could be drawn. Many dentists believed they needed to see the client before giving a price, and also evaluate for other work that needs to be done.

The issue with no suggested pricing guide is not only the price hike, but also the often confusing variance in prices amongst different dentists. For example, British Columbia's fee guide puts the suggested price of an intake exam at $91.30. In Calgary, the average cost of this same visit would be about $113.17. This doesn't seem like such a big difference, but keep in mind most dental visits are follow up visits or procedural visits! In B.C., the suggested price of a follow up appointment is $27.70, while in Calgary, it's $71.74! Over time, that money matters quite a bit.

Additionally, there is a troubling difference between various Calgary dentists, too. For example, the cheapest adult dental check up to be found in Calgary costs $117.40, while the most expensive reaches all the way up to $336.66. This is definitely a source of concern to patients. After all, nothing really happens at a routine check up besides a general tooth cleaning, fluoride rinse, and quick talk with the dentist. What is it that sets these two practices so far apart? Is the cheaper dentist providing decent care? Is the more expensive dentist better? These types of worries and doubts makes the already scary dentist visit even more foreboding.

Various news sources throughout the Alberta region, such as the Calgary Herald, report that many people are driving into other provinces for dental care, refusing to deal with the frustration and confusion of Calgary dentist fees. This is understandable: dental care is an important preventative health measure, and access to affordable dental care is necessary.