You may have heard recent news reports about lead in dental crowns made in overseas Chinese laboratories. Previously most Americans had given little thought to where their dental restorations were being made – but now patients are asking questions.
The new global economy is changing everything, and that includes the dental profession… or SOME of the dental profession. Cheap overseas labor and shrinking profit margins have forced some dentists to outsource their laboratory work to foreign laboratories. These dentists are typically those who participate in low-fee “managed care” insurance programs such as HMOs. When a dentist signs a contract with these plans, he or she must agree to the insurance company’s fee schedule, which is typically 50% or even LESS than their normal fees. But to remain in business, corners MUST be cut if these dentists are reducing their fees by 50% or more. One way to lower expenses is by sending laboratory work to China.
Always check where your dental restorations are being made. Remember that, “The bitterness of poor quality is remembered long after the sweetness of low price has faded from memory.” In the case of lead-contaminated dental crowns, poor quality may have negative effects on your health.
In my Long Island dental office I use only American laboratories that do not outsource and which follow strict quality standards. We use certified, high-quality materials and laboratories – only the best for our dental patients!
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