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2 Bumps

Kool Smiles TEXAS - I'm callin' "FRAUD!!"

Was this Kool Smiles by any chance? Always trust your instinct, I did not and now I greatly regret it.

Kool Smiles [My awful, awful experience] Feedback greatly appreciated.


I have never been so discouraged, sad and outraged at any business, as I am at kool smiles! When I moved to Abilene, April '09... I searched which children's dental offices were in network with my insurance, Metlife. Kool smiles was the only "children's dentist" in network with my insurance. I asked my sister if she had heard anything about them. She has lived in Abilene for 10+ years & works at bc/bs, and hears lots of good, unbiased info. about doctors/dentists. She told me from the get go she hadnt heard one good thing about them. She further stated that most people didnt like them because it felt like "a welfare" office... as in any government (military or civilian) office, you have huge wait time, overbooked, under-staffed, etc, etc. After hearing this, I was discouraged, but i decided to give them the benefit of the doubt... give it an honest attempt and see for myself. Over the following year and a half, I would learn to regret that decision. I am VERY, very displeased with kool smiles right now, to say the least. I will not go back there ever again. Ever.

In short, this is my experience :
Feb. '09 - Schedule first appt.
May '09 - Initial appt.. (x-rays, pics & cleaning) - no complaints, my 7 year old is excited to see games and other kids.
Nov '09 - cleaning - informed my son "needs" 4 sealants on back molars.
Nov '09 - sealants done - insurane is billed & I pay about 150-ish out of pocket.
June '10 - cleaning - informed my son "needs" a baby root canal. I hesitate, as they did not indicate any decay, etc. at the previous appt. They insist it needs to be done.
June '10 - baby root canal - insurance is billed & I pay around 150-ish (maybe more)
Nov '10 - cleaning - informed my son has 2 "cavities" that need filling.
Nov '10 - cavity # 1 - cavity filled, told that since my son's "cavities" were on opposite sides of the mouth, they could not numb both sides. And that I would need to schedule another appt for cavity #2. Appt. Scheduled. Insurance billed & 55 out-of pocket.
Nov '10 - Appt CANCELLED!!! New dentist called.
Dec ' 10 - initial appt with my dentist to fill the "cavity"... Only one thing, no cavity... at all could be detected! By sight, x-ray... Nothing. Not even discoloration in the slightest.
Nov '10 - Feb '11 - several phone calls a week from Kool smiles to both my cell phone and my husband's reminding us that I "Missed an appointment. That my child has dental work still needing to be attended to.... "

*With each and every one of these appointments. It was atleast a 1 hour wait time before my child was called back. And atleast 1 more hour after going back. Many times it was closer to two hours after being called back. Twice we were there for 4+ hours! And at every appt. the communication to the parent was awful. Very vague, generalized answers, never showed the xrays, or shown location of said tooth (or teeth, in most cases) to be worked on. And it was always communicated by a dental assistant, never the dentist. I realized the extent of it when my 3 year old became a patient, June 2010, because for both his visits (June '10 & Nov '10) I would accompany my boys throughout the duration of the appointment. I literally would sit next to my children, and never once did the dentist identify herself (or himself) to me... much less explain anything to me or my CHILDREN while examining them. That said the assistants, for the most part were friendly and nice to my kids. But they seemed stressed. Highly.

*Yes, I promise I'm not insane. Reading it sounds like any idiot could figure out these were unnecessary procedures. Trust me, I DID doubt, but I gave them the benefit of the doubt. Obviously, that was completely an awful mistake on my part. And unfortunately it is my son who ultimately suffered the most here. Very disgusted with this place.

*Of course, the worst part of this and my main concern here, is knowing there are many children that are STILL patients. Many are Medicaid. Many are private insurance. And all deserve much better care. I plan on reporting this... for the children's sake, if nothing else.

Anyway, I was curious if anyone has had anything at all like my experience? If so, I'd really appriciate any and all feedback you have to offer. Even if it is to defend Kool smiles... I literally want to believe they are not knowingly subjecting children and their parents to this. However, I am doubting there's many positive things to say after finding posts like this : That is from an Abilene's Kool smiles employee. Apparently in GA one Kool smiles office's govt contract was revoked... No more Medicaid for them. I believe this is a Kool Smiles company problem. Thoughts?

Answer Question

Asked by Bleuvapeur at 5:28 AM on May. 17, 2011 in Kids' Health

Level 2 (4 Credits)
Answers (23)
  • that is so horrible for your child to go through, and very sorry you went there :(. after they told me my child needed a root canal i would have gone to see a different dentist for a second opinion.

    Answer by 3HappylKidds at 6:07 AM on May. 17, 2011

  • that doesn't sound anything like my local one!

    Answer by zoejains_momma at 8:23 AM on May. 17, 2011

  • The kool smiles company used to have a different name. I forget what it was, but they were in the news for months because they were doing things to kids that that didn't need to be done. They were also using sub-standard materials, so I would get anything they put in your son's mouth checked by a real dentist, then file a complaint against the BBB and even possibly get a good dentist to take avery good look at the work they did and file a lawsuit if they did stuff that shouldn't have been done. Good luck, this is going to be a fight for you if you do it!

    Answer by alphamom26 at 8:55 AM on May. 17, 2011

  • That sucks.

    Answer by othermom at 9:21 AM on May. 17, 2011

  • Wow!!!! i didnt realize they were that bad! We took my ds to the one of the ones in San Antonio for his first check up. He just had a floride treatment and a teeth count. But a while later, i wanted to double check when his next apt was going to be and they told me that they "were unable to find isaac in the computer system." i gave them his bday, full name, social and they still couldnt find him!!!!! So we are not going back there. The staff was nice but not informative, like you said. It sucks because ds is on medicaid and i am having a hard time finding good offices to take him to.

    Answer by dreamangel06 at 9:29 AM on May. 17, 2011

  • Ok, there are several things going on here and there are Texas agencies that will want to hear this. Medicaid Fraud can be reported to the Office of the Inspector General:

    You can file a consumer complaint with the Office of the Attorney General

    Also you can file insurance fraud with the Texas Department of Insurance

    I hope these help. Obviously there is some organized crime going on here. Blow the whistle!


    Answer by jmpj8107 at 10:50 AM on May. 17, 2011

  • I used to work in a dental office, and unfortunately there are some offices like the one you went to out there. In my area I know there were a few that were sloppy dentists and did 'below standard' work. So when we would see patients from that DDS we knew we would have a lot of work to do to get that person's mouth in shape and healthy again. If you have issues and belive that place is doing below standard work or doing things that do not need to be done (thus charging money and making a big profit) you CAN report them to better business bureau and to the American Dental Association- also if you have insurance or medical aid- contact them as well and say you are suspicious of the work done and charges and suspect the office might be trying to commit fraud.

    Answer by MizLee at 10:50 AM on May. 17, 2011

  • I haven't dealt with anything like that, crazy!

    Answer by Samanthamommy at 1:46 PM on May. 17, 2011

  • Awe, that sucks!

    Answer by Charizma77 at 11:10 PM on May. 17, 2011

  • So sorry about your child's dental experience. I hope that you find a better dentist in your area.

    Answer by bether89 at 11:15 PM on May. 17, 2011

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