I Don't Need A Dentist To Clean My Teeth

by Conor Friedersdorf

And neither does Matt Yglesias:

My adventure in oral surgery has prompted various cracks about my earlier blogging against the dentists cartel. I would say that, realistically, the experience just really strongly underlines the case for reform in this regard. The basic fact of the matter is that I, as a patient, am and was very capable of discerning a situation like “it’s been 12 months since my teeth last got cleaned, so I should go to the dentist” and a situation like “I’ve had 48 hours worth of intense pain in the back of my lower right jaw so I should go to the dentist.”

The former scenario obviously doesn’t require an actual dentist, whereas the latter does. And if dental hygenists were allowed to work on their own, not only would this be good for hygenists (a lower-wage and female-dominated profession, and thus a progressive thing to do) it would almost certainly make it cheaper and/or more convenient to get your teeth cleaned.

Also annoying to me is the fact that health insurance excludes eyes and teeth for some reason. Those are critical body parts!