Philadelphia Magazine’s Top Dentists 2010: Pay Less, Smile More

So, that premium dental plan was a casualty of the down economy? Don’t take it out on your teeth. Here’s how you can get what you need, for less

Go to school: Lucky you! Philadelphia is home to some of the best dental schools in the country, and your chompers can reap the benefits. The University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine Clinics (215-898-8965, take patients every weekday. The initial visit, including a cleaning and a full set of x-rays, will cost $90. (Other services include everything from root canals to tooth replacement and orthodontics.) There’s also the Maurice H. Kornberg School of Dentistry at Temple (215-707-2900,, which charges $95 for a weekday morning or early afternoon clinical examination with x-rays. In addition to reduced rates, the school offers senior citizen discounts for those 65 or older, and accepts insurance. (Show up 15 minutes early, and don’t blow off appointments — you could be banned from service!)

Hit the Web: Both the Pennsylvania and the New Jersey Dental Associations offer listings of free or reduced-fee clinics by county on their websites, with information on patient eligibility. Some clinics have strict eligibility rules based on income, insurance and age, but others treat anyone in need. Try and (under “Your Oral Health”) for choices near you.

Talk to your dentist: Hey — it’s tough times all around. If you like your dentist but the cost of a procedure is an issue, ask about payment options. Ten out of 10 dentists we surveyed said they’ve helped patients on a budget get the treatment they need.