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Low cost dental "insurance"
Old 11-13-2012, 09:28 AM   #1
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Low cost dental "insurance"

We RE in August and are going on DH megacorp COBRA in February. We will be dropping Dental and Vision (too expensive for value) and keeping a high deductible HSA account. I've looked into dental coverage via 1dental.com where you pay a monthly fee and then get prearranged fees on dental services (supposedly about 50% of typical fees). You must go to their dentists. Has anyone used such a plan? We are healthy and are up to date on all cleanings, cavities, crowns, etc. Thanks in advance for your thoughts!
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Old 11-13-2012, 09:34 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Got2golf View Post
We RE in August and are going on DH megacorp COBRA in February. We will be dropping Dental and Vision (too expensive for value) and keeping a high deductible HSA account. I've looked into dental coverage via 1dental.com where you pay a monthly fee and then get prearranged fees on dental services (supposedly about 50% of typical fees). You must go to their dentists. Has anyone used such a plan? We are healthy and are up to date on all cleanings, cavities, crowns, etc. Thanks in advance for your thoughts!
you should look at keeping dental or buying a plan from delta dental. the important thing to remember is these plans can force the dentist to accept their contracted prices.

you might save money on premiums but overpay on other dental services.
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Old 11-13-2012, 01:06 PM   #3
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I extended our dental coverage on COBRA for a few months while DW had a crown done and have since dropped the dental coverage. It would be ~$75/month or $900 year and we typically only have a checkup and a cleaning (DW's crown was unusual for us). I'm taking a risk that we won't have a major problem and that on average our costs will be less than ~$900 a year for two checkups and cleanings.
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Old 11-13-2012, 01:42 PM   #4
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I extended our dental coverage on COBRA for a few months while DW had a crown done and have since dropped the dental coverage. It would be ~$75/month or $900 year and we typically only have a checkup and a cleaning (DW's crown was unusual for us). I'm taking a risk that we won't have a major problem and that on average our costs will be less than ~$900 a year for two checkups and cleanings.
Are you actually taking a risk by dropping dental insurance? My Corp policy had a yearly max of $2k/yr, hardly enough to avoid "risk." After I paid several hundred bux in premiums, used well under that most years, and had a paltry max of $2k/yr if something extremely serious came up, it hardly seemed like "insurance against risk." Like you, we're self-insuring for dental in retirement.
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Old 11-13-2012, 01:58 PM   #5
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I pay for my dental cleanings, exams and dental work through my HSA. For me, not only is having insurance (with the premium payments and annual limits) not cost effective, but also I enjoy not having to wait for all the paperwork to clear.
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Old 11-13-2012, 02:22 PM   #6
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Are you actually taking a risk by dropping dental insurance? My Corp policy had a yearly max of $2k/yr, hardly enough to avoid "risk." After I paid several hundred bux in premiums, used well under that most years, and had a paltry max of $2k/yr if something extremely serious came up, it hardly seemed like "insurance against risk." Like you, we're self-insuring for dental in retirement.
Yes, but I never opined on the significance of the risk!
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Old 11-13-2012, 05:12 PM   #7
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I just signed up for dental insurance today (for me only, not spouse). I will soon, hopefully not before insurance takes effect on 1 January, be needing a root canal & crown on a lower molar. Number 31, to be exact. Cost for me only is $16.77 per bi-weekly paycheck. Wife & I talked it over, and her teeth are in good shape now, so we're gambling we can leave her off the policy until next open season (end of 2013), then we'll most likely add her to the policy. That'll of course double the premium. I went with GEHA (Government Employees Health Association) for coverage, because I liked their $12000 per person limit. I think that's pretty high for dental coverage, though I sincerely doubt/hope I don't need that much work done. I do have some other dental issues beside the molar, so I'll be spending a fair amount of time in the chair.
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:45 PM   #8
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you should look at keeping dental or buying a plan from delta dental. the important thing to remember is these plans can force the dentist to accept their contracted prices.

you might save money on premiums but overpay on other dental services.
I have Delta Dental insurance, self only, Plan A.
For my purposes, it is reasonable ($55.31 per month) and provides good coverage for routine procedures, exams, xrays, and 4 cleanings per year.
Note that 3 cleanings is the allotted Delta Dental policy amount, but my dentist submits all 4 cleanings as periodontal disease prevention and recurring maintenance for me. Every cleaning is covered.
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