Any tips on Dental Implants costs?

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My wife needs 2 bone grafts & 2 implants done. (We are looking at implants because she is only 32 and that seems to be the better deal compared to a bridge). However, even though we have good medical ins and decent dental ins (or so I thought) they aren't going to cover anything. The estimate is $7800 (implants themselves are ~$5K) Does that sound about right or anyone have tips on how to save some $$ (but still get quality). I can contribute that amount into my FSA, but my paycheck will be pretty terrible all next year. I even looked into the whole medical tourism thing, but the plan calls for about 3-4 office visits so not sure that would even be feasible.

Or should we just wait until 2014/2015 and let this be covered after all the healthcare stuff kicks in (assuming that it would be).

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tsavalia (Nov. 10, 2010 @ 3:39p) |

There is a dental office in south Philadelphia which is doing dental implants for only $1449 each including abutment and... (more)

tsavalia (Nov. 10, 2010 @ 3:43p) |

I'm glad to find someone who has went to the this dental spa in Louisville. I'm considering going here for the one impla... (more)

rebma85 (Nov. 12, 2010 @ 8:44p) |

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get a second and third opinions, many dentists say you need to do unecessary work to pay for their Porsche

That's priced how I would expect for that procedure.

Has she already had extractions or lost teeth, or is this being suggested in place of a root-canal/crown?

pics?

Never mind. Didn't read that it was DENTAL implants. Prematurely replied, I guess.

I wouldn't recommend implant. Just google implant and see. For example:

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/08/08/Be...

hanahwy said: I wouldn't recommend implant. Just google implant and see. For example:

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/08/08/Be...


This looks like spam, FYI.

I have two implants, have not had an issue with them (it has only been a handful of years though).

Advice:
There are limits to FSA, make sure you can do that sum at once. If not, I recommend spacing it out, even if it means Nov - Feb (just get half the bill in Dec, half in Feb).

I highly doubt this procedure will be covered in the near future, so if you want to do it there is no need to wait IMO.

As others said, it is worth it to shop around a little. Just like anything else, I wouldn't go with the lowest bid necessarily.

It is not too painful, and seems to be very reliable. Good luck

Thanks for the suggestions. She had the 2 teeth pulled about 10 yrs ago. This is what started the problems and last year she to get to braces, to keep it from happening again they want to do the implants once her braces come off in 2-3 months.

do you live near a dental school? you can call them to see if they will perform the procedures at a reduced price.

I got implants (4) in the lower jaw 6 years ago --- i think it was $13,000 all said and done.

But, best 13k i ever spent - they are great and i have had no problems at all. I wpould NEVER suggest a plate alone in the lower jaw ---they dont wrk well at all. The implants say in place even when eating an apple or corn on the cob. If you can afford it --- the ONLY way to go.

Wow I"m scared now. Just had a tooth out two weeks ago and was told $2k for implant... Was waiting 'til January to use FSA.

Sounds like it might end up costing a lot more.

Note that there are two costs associated with the procedure. The Implant refers to a socket that is placed into your jaw bone structure. It is merely a support system on which to place a fake tooth (the Crown). Likely, the $2k quote was merely for placing the implant itself. After that, you need a crown made and placed, and this often costs another four figures.

My implant was not covered by insurance at all, and the crown was covered at 50%.

To save money, you could try going to Costa Rica.

magicboy2 said: Note that there are two costs associated with the procedure. The Implant refers to a socket that is placed into your jaw bone structure. It is merely a support system on which to place a fake tooth (the Crown). Likely, the $2k quote was merely for placing the implant itself. After that, you need a crown made and placed, and this often costs another four figures.

My implant was not covered by insurance at all, and the crown was covered at 50%.

To save money, you could try going to Costa Rica.


Thanks I just clarified with the oral surgeon/insurance company. Yes the $2k was just for the socket thing.

I'm "lucky" that 50% of the two costs are covered by insurance but only up to $1500. I'm surprised the implant code (6010) was covered, glad I checked. I'll be out $2100 and crossing my fingers another crown isn't needed in 2011.

momoman said: do you live near a dental school? you can call them to see if they will perform the procedures at a reduced price.


This is a great idea, most dental students have a requirement of X number of X procedures they must complete before graduation. Often times they are willing to help pay for all or part of the cost of a procedure as if they don't meet the requirement they are forced to stay another semester...so paying $3,000 for you wife's procedure may help them graduate 5 months early and help them earn $60,000 in that time.

FragOut said: momoman said: do you live near a dental school? you can call them to see if they will perform the procedures at a reduced price.


This is a great idea, most dental students have a requirement of X number of X procedures they must complete before graduation. Often times they are willing to help pay for all or part of the cost of a procedure as if they don't meet the requirement they are forced to stay another semester...so paying $3,000 for you wife's procedure may help them graduate 5 months early and help them earn $60,000 in that time.


Do you really want to be worked on by a student though>?



I had one implant done last year. The cost of a dental bridge was less but it didn't sound right to me. The final cost, after insurance, was about $1200 for me. I like the result so far. The only part I did not like is the length of the entire process from beginning, waiting for the bone to grow around the screw, to the end. It took almost 9 months?

A local dentist is advertising something called, "One-day mini implant". I am not sure what is it though.

sorry, i misunderstood --- you are taling about just for a tooth or 2 --- my quote above was for the whole lower denture (all the teeth)

This is not a joke... The dental field is getting very competitive and some dentists are now getting posts, caps, etc. from chinese suppliers to reduce costs.

If you price around, make sure you go to reputable dentists who have been recommended and be very wary of really low pricing...

SteveG

OP as you are quickly learning dental insurance is completely different than health insurance. I don't think there is anything in the health care legislation mandating dental insurance coverage. I also have noticed most employer-based dental insurance programs are severely limited and only basically cover cleanings and x-rays and fillings. Coverage quickly drops off to ~50% for crowns, and almost all of these plans have a max yearly payout of ~$1-2K. As others pointed out, you can milk these plans for more money by simply doing half the work this year and half the work next year. Insurance to me means something that pays for things I cannot afford, so I really hate how the term insurance is used to describe these employer dental plans.
Basically you need to look at this in terms of a labor cost (cost by dentist to do the work) and parts cost (cost of implant/crowns). In my experience the "labor" cost is highly variable, and you absolutely must get at least 2 more quotes for the work. For years when I had no dental insurance I continued to drive 90 minutes one way to the dentist in my parents smaller town, as he was 50-100% cheaper on cleanings than the dentists in the bigger city I lived in. I can also tell you from experience that dentists in blue collar and poorer neighborhoods charge less. My guess would also be that there would be cheaper dentist in immigrant areas as well. Quality of the work is extremely important, but just because the office is fancy doesn't mean the dentist is good.
On the "parts" components again the best way is to shop around, but you will find that this is more fixed as custom crowns/implants do cost a fair amount.

Go with the implant, not the bridge. I had a bridge for 12 years and have had an implant for 8. The implant was worth the $2000. I didn't have dental insurance at the time. It is pretty much identical to my other teeth from my perspective.


OP, $7,800 for two dental implants with a bone graft is a very reasonable price. Our office charges $3,500 per dental implant (implant surgery, custom abutment, and final implant crown). Here is a memorable quote from someone. "Never select lawyers and doctors based on price. You get what you paid for." If an attorney or doctor's fee is below the average, then you need to investigate why the fee is low (i.e.,inferior product or generic product that hasn't no reliabity???). Nevertheless, pick a doctor or attorney based on clinical skills and experience rather than on a cheaper cost. It costs more if you have to find another dentist to correct the work of incompetent dentist. I hope you find my comment helpful. BTW, I'd recommend to put your implant money on your flex spending and use it next year ( it can save you money based on your tax bracket). Also, do you know which implant system the doctor is going to use? I recommend one of the following: Zimmer, Nobel Biocare, or 3i implant). For the future reference, avoiding extraction (except wisdom teeth) will save you money. Free advice to FatWallet members! I should start a website addressing dental questions. Anyone interested in creating one?

OP, $7,800 for two dental implants with a bone graft is a very reasonable price. Our office charges $3,500 per dental implant (implant surgery, custom abutment, and final implant crown). Here is a memorable quote from someone. "Never select lawyers and doctors based on price. You get what you paid for." If an attorney or doctor's fee is below the average, then you need to investigate why the fee is low (i.e.,inferior product or generic product that hasn't no reliabity???). Nevertheless, pick a doctor or attorney based on clinical skills and experience rather than on a cheaper cost. It costs more if you have to find another dentist to correct the work of incompetent dentist. I hope you find my comment helpful. BTW, I'd recommend to put your implant money on your flex spending and use it next year ( it can save you money based on your tax bracket). Also, do you know which implant system the doctor is going to use? I recommend one of the following: Zimmer, Nobel Biocare, or 3i implant). For the future reference, avoiding extraction (except wisdom teeth) will save you money. Free advice to FatWallet members! I should start a website addressing dental questions. Anyone interested in creating one?

chocula said: FragOut said: momoman said: do you live near a dental school? you can call them to see if they will perform the procedures at a reduced price.


This is a great idea, most dental students have a requirement of X number of X procedures they must complete before graduation. Often times they are willing to help pay for all or part of the cost of a procedure as if they don't meet the requirement they are forced to stay another semester...so paying $3,000 for you wife's procedure may help them graduate 5 months early and help them earn $60,000 in that time.


Do you really want to be worked on by a student though>?


I think I'd trust a 4th year dental student doing these under supervision of a professor more so than a random "one day sale" dentist, but again, you get what you pay for usually.

I am in the process of getting 2 dental implants. The total cost for implants, crowns and bone grafts is going to be about $8,000. My insurance covers the crowns, which will knock off $2,400 from my part of the bill. I've already had the extractions and the bone grafts. So now I'm waiting for the healing process before I continue, I go back in January for the implant... If done right it's not a short process.

FragOut said:
I think I'd trust a 4th year dental student doing these under supervision of a professor more so than a random "one day sale" dentist, but again, you get what you pay for usually.


Although I don't have to go that route, I know several people who are very happy in getting their haircuts at a local barber school by students and dental care at a dental school.

momoman said: do you live near a dental school? you can call them to see if they will perform the procedures at a reduced price.
It is not the procedure itself, but the actual implant that cost the most.

Dont know where u live; I would recommend that you go to a nearby reputed teaching dental school and show it to one of the teaching staff. They usually will give you good quotes and advice on your treatment if you can wait until 2014 etc... I would not recommend that you wait that long, bcoz there will be bone loss until then.

* This is coming from a non-practising dentist.

Best place to get an implant is a dental school in your area. Not only its cheap but also its done under supervision of multiple instructors who are specialist in that field. Implants are much better option than bridges in terms of prognosis. And more you wait with missing space (without a tooth), more complicated the treatment becomes.

Was a removable partial denture not an option? I don't like the idea of someone drilling down into my gums. From what I understand, implants are not permanent either, they need fine tuning down the road.

My best friend who treats me as his brother is a dentist, with bone graft it still cost me $2700 for each tooth. The price seems good.

utsavdesai said: Best place to get an implant is a dental school in your area. Not only its cheap but also its done under supervision of multiple instructors who are specialist in that field. Implants are much better option than bridges in terms of prognosis. And more you wait with missing space (without a tooth), more complicated the treatment becomes.

As a dentist, I strongly disagree. When I was a dental student, I did not have the experience and made lots of mistakes. My professors were researchers (that's why they are in the academic programs). They lacked real private practice and clinical experience. If you don't mind spending lots of time getting a procedure done than it may be worth going to dental school to save money. But don't expect a dental school to do better job than a private practice dentist. Remember, the dental school program gives cheaper a dental service in exchange for the students to learn from your treatment. So don't assume that dental school is better. I can tell you that I wouldn't go back to my dental school to get any work done by a student.

jeffj19 said: Was a removable partial denture not an option? I don't like the idea of someone drilling down into my gums. From what I understand, implants are not permanent either, they need fine tuning down the road.

Please consult with your dentist before making a negative statement about implants.

aleck said: momoman said: do you live near a dental school? you can call them to see if they will perform the procedures at a reduced price.
It is not the procedure itself, but the actual implant that cost the most.


It's both. The implant components are expensive; however, it takes a special clinical skills to place the implant.

hkgfnt said: FragOut said:
I think I'd trust a 4th year dental student doing these under supervision of a professor more so than a random "one day sale" dentist, but again, you get what you pay for usually.


Although I don't have to go that route, I know several people who are very happy in getting their haircuts at a local barber school by students and dental care at a dental school.


I rather trust a dentist with 10 years of experience vs. 4th year dental student (4th year dental students don't have any experience placing implants). It's usually the residents (perio or oral surgery dept) that will place implants. Yes, they are learning based on your treatment. Haircut is reversible. But surgery in your mouth may not be reversible. There are things in your life where you can save money by go for a cheaper option. But there are things in your life where it's best to spend money and go for a quality service (lawyers and doctors). Just my opinion.

My father had implants in place of a bridge and his insurance was not going to pay for it. He discussed the situation thoroughly with them and they ended up reimbursing their allowance for the bridge, as they would have had to pay for it anyway.

Never take no for an answer from your insurer. I saw something the other day that said something like 47 percent of claims that were originally denied were paid when the insured made an appeal. Take your time, collect good information and have a reasonable argument and you may be able to recoup some of the costs.

docjoo said: utsavdesai said: Best place to get an implant is a dental school in your area. Not only its cheap but also its done under supervision of multiple instructors who are specialist in that field. Implants are much better option than bridges in terms of prognosis. And more you wait with missing space (without a tooth), more complicated the treatment becomes.

As a dentist, I strongly disagree. When I was a dental student, I did not have the experience and made lots of mistakes. My professors were researchers (that's why they are in the academic programs). They lacked real private practice and clinical experience. If you don't mind spending lots of time getting a procedure done than it may be worth going to dental school to save money. But don't expect a dental school to do better job than a private practice dentist. Remember, the dental school program gives cheaper a dental service in exchange for the students to learn from your treatment. So don't assume that dental school is better. I can tell you that I wouldn't go back to my dental school to get any work done by a student.


News at 11. The barber called. The barber suggested I get a haircut from the barber.

I received a 5% discount by paying upfront for my implants.

Skipping 72 Messages...
I'm glad to find someone who has went to the this dental spa in Louisville. I'm considering going here for the one implant that I need. I will give them a call in the next day or so to schedule my visit.

Thanks for the information!




beaglesforme said: I needed five, yes FIVE, implants done and by the time I got quotes from the specialist, that was going to do my implants and the dentist, that was going to do the crowns, it was going to cost $21,000.00!!!!!!!! I could not afford to pay this much and most dentists require payment when services are rendered. Yes I did qualify for CARE CREDIT, but this was still way out of my price range. After doing a little research online, I too was looking at the whole "dental tourism" thing, I actually found a place in Louisville, KY that was just as affordable as places outside of the country. After a few phone calls, it was decided that this was the way to go! I came in from out of state, they put me up in a beautiful hotel, and I was done with procedure number one in less 4 hours. That was in July, and I have to go back only one more time in December to get the crowns (which are in included in the price) put in. The total cost was a third of what I would have paid locally (in NC). 4th Street Dental Spa in Louisville, KY was amazing! It was relaxed and but totally legit. I am not being paid to say any of this, I just had a really great experience and wanted share it with you! Good luck!



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