Is Aspen Dental a Scam? A Comprehensive Review of Their Quality and Ethics

Aspen Dental is one of the largest dental care providers in the US, with over 800 locations across 42 states. They offer a wide range of services, from routine checkups and cleanings to dentures, implants, and cosmetic dentistry. They also claim to have affordable prices, flexible payment options, and a compassionate approach to patient care.

But is Aspen Dental really as good as they say? Or are they scams that overcharge, underdeliver, and exploit their customers? In this blog post, I will give you an honest and unbiased review of Aspen Dental, based on my own research, customer reviews, and expert opinions. I will also answer some frequently asked questions about Aspen Dental and give you some tips on how to find a reliable and trustworthy dentist.

The Pros and Cons of Aspen Dental

Like any dental care provider, Aspen Dental has its pros and cons. Here are some of the main ones:

Pros

  • Convenience:

  • Aspen Dental has hundreds of locations across the country, so you can easily find one near you. They also have extended hours, including evenings and weekends, and accept walk-ins and emergencies. You can book an appointment online or by phone and get a free consultation and X-rays on your first visit.
  • Accessibility:

  • Aspen Dental accepts most insurance plans, including Medicaid and Medicare. They also offer their own financing options, such as the Aspen Dental Credit Card, the Aspen Dental Peace of Mind Promise, and the Aspen Dental Complete Care Plan. These plans allow you to pay for your treatment in monthly installments, with no interest, no annual fees, and no credit checks. They also have a Denture Money Back Guarantee, which gives you a full refund if you are not satisfied with your dentures within 90 days.
  • Variety:

  • Aspen Dental offers a comprehensive range of dental services, from preventive care and fillings to crowns, bridges, implants, and dentures. They also provide cosmetic dentistry, such as teeth whitening, veneers, and Invisalign. They have their own on-site labs, where they can make and repair dentures and other prosthetics in a matter of hours. They also use advanced technology, such as digital X-rays, intraoral cameras, and 3D imaging, to provide accurate diagnosis and treatment.
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Cons

  • Quality:

  • Aspen Dental has a low rating of 1.6 stars out of 5 on Trustpilot, and 1.3 stars out of 5 on Sitejabber, based on hundreds of customer reviews. Many reviewers complain about poor quality of care, unprofessional staff, high pressure sales tactics, unnecessary treatments, hidden fees, billing errors, and poor customer service. Some reviewers also report experiencing pain, infections, complications, and damage to their teeth and gums after visiting Aspen Dental.
  • Ethics:

  • Aspen Dental has been accused of engaging in unethical and illegal practices, such as fraud, malpractice, and false advertising. In 2015, Aspen Dental agreed to pay $450,000 to settle a lawsuit filed by the New York Attorney General, who alleged that Aspen Dental misled customers about their fees, financing, and insurance coverage, and violated state laws that prohibit the corporate practice of dentistry. In 2019, Aspen Dental was sued by a former employee, who claimed that Aspen Dental pressured dentists to perform unnecessary and expensive procedures, and fired him for refusing to comply. In 2020, Aspen Dental was sued by a class of customers, who alleged that Aspen Dental falsely advertised their dentures as being custom-made, when in fact they were mass-produced and ill-fitting.
  • Reputation:

  • Aspen Dental has a bad reputation among many dental professionals, who criticize their business model, quality standards, and ethical values. Some dentists warn that Aspen Dental is more focused on making money than providing quality care, and that they use deceptive marketing and aggressive sales tactics to lure customers. Some dentists also claim that Aspen Dental hires inexperienced and underqualified dentists, and that they do not provide adequate training, supervision, and support for their staff.

Conclusion

Aspen Dental is a popular dental care provider that offers a range of services, from routine checkups and cleanings to dentures, implants, and cosmetic dentistry. They also claim to have affordable prices, flexible payment options, and a compassionate approach to patient care.

However, Aspen Dental is not without its flaws and controversies. Many customers and experts have raised concerns about their quality of care, ethical standards, and business practices. Some of the common complaints include poor workmanship, high-pressure sales tactics, unnecessary treatments, hidden fees, billing errors, and poor customer service. Some of the legal issues include fraud, malpractice, false advertising, and violations of state laws.

Therefore, before you decide to visit Aspen Dental, you should do your own research, compare your options, ask questions, and trust your instincts. You should also look for a reliable and trustworthy dentist who can provide you with the best care possible and who respects your needs and preferences.

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I hope you found this review helpful and informative. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. Thank you for reading!

Frequently Asked Questions about Aspen Dental

Here are some of the most common questions that people have about Aspen Dental, and the answers that I found:

  • Is Aspen Dental a franchise?

  • No, Aspen Dental is not a franchise. Aspen Dental is a branded network of independently owned and operated dental practices that are supported by a dental service organization (DSO) called Aspen Dental Management, Inc. (ADMI). ADMI provides non-clinical services, such as marketing, billing, accounting, training, and supplies, to the Aspen Dental practices but does not own or control them. The dentists who work at Aspen Dental are either employees or contractors of the individual practice owners and are responsible for their own clinical decisions and patient care.
  • How much does Aspen Dental charge?

  • Aspen Dental does not have a fixed price list for their services, as the cost of treatment may vary depending on the location, the dentist, the insurance plan, and the individual case. However, Aspen Dental claims to have lower prices than the average dental fee in the US and to offer free or discounted services for new patients, such as free consultations, free X-rays, free exams, and $100 off any dental service. Aspen Dental also provides a written treatment plan and a clear breakdown of the costs and payment options before starting any procedure, so you can make an informed decision.
  • Does Aspen Dental do implants?

  • Yes, Aspen Dental does offer dental implants, which are artificial tooth roots that are surgically placed into the jawbone and can support crowns, bridges, or dentures. Aspen Dental claims to have a team of experts, including oral surgeons, prosthodontists, and implant specialists, who can perform implant procedures using the latest technology and materials. Aspen Dental also claims to have a 97% success rate for their implants and to offer a lifetime warranty for their implant-supported dentures.
  • Is Aspen Dental good for dentures?

  • Aspen Dental is one of the largest providers of dentures in the US and claims to have helped over 8 million people smile with confidence. Aspen Dental offers a variety of denture options, such as full dentures, partial dentures, implant-supported dentures, and snap-in dentures, and can customize them to fit your mouth, budget, and preferences. Aspen Dental also claims to have their own on-site labs, where they can make and repair dentures in as little as one day, and to offer a Denture Money Back Guarantee, which gives you a full refund if you are not happy with your dentures within 90 days.
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How to Find a Reliable and Trustworthy Dentist

Aspen Dental may seem like a convenient and affordable option for your dental needs, but you should be aware of the potential risks and drawbacks of choosing them. If you are looking for a reliable and trustworthy dentist, here are some tips that can help you:

  • Do your research.

  • Before you visit any dentist, do some background research on their credentials, experience, reputation, and reviews. You can check online sources, such as the American Dental Association (ADA) website, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website, and the Consumer Affairs website, to find out more about the dentist’s education, license, accreditation, ratings, complaints, and testimonials. You can also ask for recommendations from your friends, family, or other health care providers who may have personal experience with the dentist.
  • Compare your options:

  • Don’t settle for the first dentist that you find, or the one that offers the lowest price. Compare different dentists based on their services, quality, fees, and payment plans, and see which one meets your needs and expectations. You can also visit different dental offices and get a second or third opinion before you make a final decision. You can ask for a written treatment plan and a detailed estimate of the costs and payment options, and compare them with those of other dentists.
  • Ask questions:

  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions and express your concerns to the dentist. You have the right to know what the dentist is doing, why they are doing it, and what the risks and benefits are. You also have the right to refuse or postpone any treatment that you are not comfortable with or that you think is unnecessary or overpriced. You can ask questions such as:
    • What are your qualifications and experience?
    • How do you keep up with the latest developments and technologies in dentistry?
    • How do you ensure the safety and hygiene of your equipment and instruments?
    • What are the alternatives to the recommended treatment, and what are the pros and cons of each option?
    • How long will the treatment take, and how many visits will it require?
    • What are the possible complications and side effects of the treatment, and how will you handle them?
    • How do you handle emergencies and after-hours care?
    • How do you handle anxious or nervous patients?
    • How do you handle complaints and disputes?
  • Trust your instincts.

  • Finally, trust your instincts and choose a dentist with whom you feel comfortable and confident. A good dentist should be friendly, respectful, honest, and professional, listen to your needs and preferences, and explain everything clearly and patiently. A good dentist should also respect your privacy and confidentiality and follow the ethical and legal standards of the profession. If you feel that the dentist is rude, dishonest, pushy, or incompetent, or that the office is dirty and disorganized,you should look for another dentist who can provide you with better care and service.

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