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Dental discount plans?

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by Ajax, Jan 15, 2013.

  1. Ajax

    Ajax Well-Known Member

    Does anyone have any experience with dental discount plans? I have dental insurance from my work but it only covers 1200 a year which is nowhere near enough what most dental procedures cost. I have to get a root canal, post-core and a crown on one tooth and the cheapo dental clinic I go to quoted me a price of 2500$! So not only will that eat up my insurance benefits for the whole year but I will have to pay 1300$ on top of that... Checking around online, I read about dental discount (rather than dental insurance plan). You pay around 150$ per year for this then the participating dentists do the procedures at significant discounts. It works out much cheaper than using my dental insurance, but I have never heard of dental discount plans and was wondering if they're legit. If anyone has any experience with these, I'd love to hear it.
  2. KCC

    KCC Well-Known Member

    I never found dental insurance worth the money because my premiums always exceeded their payouts for procedures, so I lost money on it for the full 20 years. And my current dentist gives significant discounts to non-insurance people like me because there is so much less paperwork.
  3. MacMadame

    MacMadame Cat Lady-in-Training

    I think it depends on how bad your teeth are. I figured out that dental insurance via COBRA would end up costing as much as just paying to get my teeth cleaned so we didn't get it. And then I broke a crown and would have had to pay $1200 to get it fixed as well as two other things that needed doing. I ended up waiting until I could get dental insurance again. But my kids would have only broke even because they only needed teeth cleanings.
  4. madm

    madm Well-Known Member

    After several years of retirement and having no dental insurance, I decided to take the plunge and sign up for Delta Dental coverage for my family (4 people). We are paying about $100/month for this. Hopefully we will break even or come out ahead since 4 people have a $1500 per year max. So far we have all gotten our cleanings and xrays paid for at 90%, and my kids have gotten numerous fillings at 50% (they pay for amalgam fillings, not porcelein, so you have to cover the difference). One of the benefits is getting the negotiated rates for procedures, rather than the full price. I'm not sure if we will come out ahead on our investment, but I think we will at least break even.

    One of my kids recently turned 26 and had to get her own dental insurance (she is a student and has no coverage through work). She is paying $44/month for her coverage. I think she'll break even because she'll have two cleanings per year and xrays, and she has a few fillings to take care of. Even at 50% coverage for the fillings, this should save her a few hundred dollars.
  5. TheGirlCanSkate

    TheGirlCanSkate Well-Known Member

    The only discounts I have seen have been through groupon. And mostly it's cosmetic work (half off braces for example). The caveat is that you pay upfront.
  6. maatTheViking

    maatTheViking Danish Ice Dance! Go Laurence & Nikolaj!

    I had a root canal + crown and 2 fillings made in one year - my insurance did not cover the full cost. Next year I had molars removed, and I had set money aside in my FSA for that + extra for more fillings. Turned out it was waste of money as I didn't have any more fillings, everything was fine. I think you really need to ask your dentist what your chances are for needed more work like this more often.
    I know having a crown scared me into flossing WAY more often and I have had not issues since then. My dentist have informed me that if I floss everyday, the number of fillings I will need should be very low. Thus extra insurance would not make sense.
  7. Anita18

    Anita18 Well-Known Member

    Depends on your teeth. My teeth are very soft. It must be a genetic thing, because my sister was informed she needed a root canal and crown in her early 20's, and she is like, the poster child for dental care! Flossed 2x a day at the time, even. I also had a roommate whose father was a dentist and she also had a crown in her mid-20s. You can never really predict these things...
  8. maatTheViking

    maatTheViking Danish Ice Dance! Go Laurence & Nikolaj!

    yeah, that was why I said you need to talk to your dentist - it really depends on your teeth and mine were better than expected once I get regular cleanings and take care. Everyones teeth are different :)
  9. MacMadame

    MacMadame Cat Lady-in-Training

    Mine suck. Trying to save on dental insurance was stupid for me.