Q: Why is oral health important?
A: Currently research is being carried out to determine whether there is a link between severe gum disease and an increased risk of delivering preterm, low birth weight babies in pregnant women; difficulty controlling blood sugar levels in people with diabetes; and an increased risk of heart attack or stroke.

Q: Will I be charged if I need to cancel an appointment?
A: If a patient calls to cancel an appointment 24 hours prior to the appointment no fee will be assessed. However, if you confirm the appointment and either fail to come to the appointment or cancel just hours before, you will assessed a $75.00 missed appointment fee and your insurance will not cover this expense. There are considerations given to patient/family emergencies or other circumstances but it is up to the patient to communicate these as soon as possible.

Q: What is a treatment plan and do I need one?
A: After you have seen Dr. Raichart either during your initial visit or subsequent visits, she will develop a treatment plan to meet your oral health needs. The treatment plan will be discussed with you and a timeline developed together with you to complete the dental care outlined inthe plan. You will be asked to sign the plan indicating that it has been explained to you and you will be given a copy for your records.

Q: What do I do I have an emergency when the office is closed?
A: Eagle River Dentistry has an answering machine on which patients can leave messages at any time of day or night. On weekends and during holidays, "patients of record' are directed to call either an emergency number or asked to call other dental offices which have agreed to accepts patients during Dr. Raichart's absence. Every effort will be made to see the patient the next working day. Emergency time is made available in the daily/weekly schedule for patients with emergencies.

Q: My gums bleed after I brush, is there anything I can do?
A: Gum disease is a term that is used for a variety of conditions, from simple gum inflammation to serious gum disease which can result in loss of teeth. Plaque can cause redness and swelling of the gums and that is call gingivitis. It is a mild form of gum disease in which gums bleed easily. It can be reversed with daily brushing and flossing. If not treated, gingivitis, can advance to a condition known as periodontitis which will require more frequent visits to the hygienist to remove plaque formed on the teeth.

In periodontitis, gums pull away from the teeth allowing 'pockets' of infection to form. If periodontitis is not treated, the bone and tissue supporting the teeth are destroyed and the teeth may become loose and have to be removed.

Gum disease symptoms may include: persistent bad breath, red or swollen gums; tender or bleeding gums; painful chewing; loose teeth and sensitive teeth.

Q: Dental Insurance, what can I expect?
A: There are many aspects of your dental insurance we at Eagle River Dentistry would like to inform you about. Most of this information is not readily available from your insurance company, and may not even be known by your employer. We feel that it is in your best interest to know these facts in order to help you make decisions about your oral heath care.

  • You have the right to refuse treatment. If you accept treatment, and the treatment is performed, you, the patient, are responsible for full payment of the treatment.
  • We process insurance claims for patients of record - those that come in regularly for check-ups.
  • We will estimate your portion of the total fee; however we do not know exactly what your insurance will pay. Any remaining balance must be paid by the patient.
  • Payment of your estimated portion of the fee is to be paid at the time of your visit.
  • Your insurance benefits are the result of an agreement between you, your employer, and the insurance company. We do not have any agreements with insurance companies. We expect our fees to be paid regardless of insurance benefit.
  • Unfortunately, some of the services that you may need or want will not be covered by your dental insurer. Our goal is to help you achieve and maintain optimal dental care, which is not necessarily the goal of your dental insurance company. Their goal is to provide only the negotiated benefits for the specifically selected services.
  • Insurance companies make money by limiting their own risk. They pay benefits on the most inexpensive treatment option. This is not always the ideal treatment option.
  • We pre-authorize treatment for individual procedures over $400 except in the case of emergency treatment (root canal therapy). The pre-estimate of benefits sent to us by your insurance company is still not a guarantee of benefits.
  • Your insurance company may provide benefits based on a "fee schedule". This fee schedule directly affects the cost of the plan to your employer. Some less-expensive plans pay lower benefits. We usually do not know these plans in advance.