One procedure that is frequently not covered by insurance plans and is usually seen as a frivolous act is non life saving periodontal surgery. Sometimes these procedures are lumped under the term of plastic surgery, when in reality they may not be just for show.
There are many different kinds of procedures that can be lumped under the term periodontal surgery. Mostly it will be the removal of little bits and pieces of gums form on top of or in between teeth, but it is not limited to just that. Sometimes the removal or extraction of teeth, particularly wisdom teeth, can involve oral surgery as well. But oral surgery is not limited to just this. One of the things that can be done is a so called gum graft. This is the attachment of extra connective tissues top places where ti is needed. While having not so much gums may just seem like an aesthetic issue, it can quickly turn into a serious dental problem as well.
First and foremost, if the layer of gum between the gums and the nerves beneath them, then tooth sensitivity may result, which is a condition that makes it difficult to work and live in general. Only more connective tissue (i.e: gums) are the solution to this problem, if you do not want to kill the tooth in question or extract it altogether. And these solutions of course will result in tooth loss, which is bad.
The question, form the point of view of an insurance provider is, when is it just an aesthetic issue? At what point does having receding gums stop being purely an issue of looks, and the corrective surgery associated with it a plastic surgery, and when does it become a legitimate medical concern, to be paid for by a company that you give money to to handle your health issues? There are no right and wrong answers to this question, as it is hard to tell. Obviously if the patient is in pain the ethical thing to do- from the point of view of the insurance companies- would be to handle the situation, and pay for the corrective surgery. But it is difficult, because then the patient has the right to ask: do I really have to wait until I am in pain for my insurance company to do something about my situation?
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