The short answer is they don’t want to give the impression of a “Bait and Switch”.
Here is the long answer: If you do receive a quote over the phone, the prices given are usually for the most common procedures. However, during your exam, the doctor may see something that would dictate the necessity of a different procedure and associated cost. So what you may see as a simple procedure, may be complicated by other factors.
Most dentists use a Universal “Dental Procedure Number Code” with a cost assigned to each procedure. Between General Dentistry and Specialist Dentistry there are several hundred procedure codes and related fees. So unlike calling your local tire shop where a few questions and answers get you a price, there are questions neither you or the doctor can answer until he or she performs an exam and x-ray.
Hence prices are a tenuous, and often seen as a risky thing to quote over the phone. We all expect a business to stick to a quoted phone price, but it is just not that simple with dentistry. At Emergency Dental Care USA, we offer reasonable exam and x-ray fees (which we’re always happy to provide over the phone), and will always tell you all options and costs before doing any treatment.