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Murphy's Law
Old 06-29-2015, 08:41 PM   #1
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Murphy's Law

Three weeks post FIRE and I find I have to get a dental implant- cost out of pocket will be about 9k.
Worse, it's up front so I will be lacking a canine for about 8 months. They will make me a device that I can wear, has a phony tooth, totally cosmetic but cannot eat with it.

Which would be worse for you, the hillbilly look or the cost?


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Old 06-29-2015, 08:56 PM   #2
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My wife had the flipper right in the upper front. I called her a Hansen sister (after the movie Slapshot). I am a month away from finally getting the crown on my implant way in the back. I hope the insurance at least covers the crown. So far, it's been like pulling teeth (sorry!) to get them to cover anything, even the extraction. The cost is significant. Luckily, my dentist is a long time friend and I am getting the family discount. I hope this is the only one I need. My wife has had 2 so far. All of ours were from cracked roots. I feel your pain.
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Old 06-29-2015, 09:15 PM   #3
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It really does not matter if it were after or before FIRE.... dental insurance just does not pay that much for it...

My DW had two implants, but both were on the side...

Yes, the cost is a pain... and I know that I will be spending more as her teeth are pretty bad...
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Old 07-02-2015, 08:49 AM   #4
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Holy cow, that's alot of money! What does the average income person do??
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Old 07-02-2015, 08:57 AM   #5
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Holy cow, that's alot of money! What does the average income person do??
Go without the tooth. A little higher income and they might get a bridge or false tooth. Somewhere in there is having all teeth pulled and getting a full set of false teeth.
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Old 07-02-2015, 08:58 AM   #6
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Holy cow, that's alot of money! What does the average income person do??
Nothing. Heck, even those who have relatively high income would still balk at the costs. I know my aunt was quoted $25K for the dental work required (and yes, she's already gotten 2nd and 3rd opinions). The $1,500 annual maximum that insurance will pay barely even scratches the surface.
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Old 07-02-2015, 09:01 AM   #7
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Holy cow, that's alot of money! What does the average income person do??
When I had my implant done, that's what my HSA is for. Money well spent.
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Old 07-02-2015, 09:59 AM   #8
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Luckily I did set aside a good pad for unexpected medical costs, and while I understand medical providers are not in practice to break even it does seem high.


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Old 07-02-2015, 10:05 AM   #9
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When I had my implant done, that's what my HSA is for. Money well spent.
Alas, we have good health insurance at work so not eligible for HSA. I wish the HSA rules were relaxed a bit. Even if someone has decent medical coverage, dental usually isn't as good. Dental insurance barely pays anything. Thankfully, the FSA limit back when I had my dental work done was ~$5,000 (2011-12, iirc). HSA also makes for a good long term care self-insurance option. I would think they'd want to encourage that instead of folks having to get Medicaid.
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Old 07-03-2015, 12:29 AM   #10
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I'm sorry for your troubles. DH had a flipper on a lower front tooth and being frugal he did not get the more expensive flipper. He needed it adjusted several times, it fell out a lot plus he had to take it out to eat (no, he didn't pay for it's meal - bad joke, sorry). He also had a failed bone graft or two so that flipper was in his mouth for well over a year.

His next implant was much easier.

We have a 'dental sinking fund' for his dental adventures.

If you have a choice I would recommend the best flipper.


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Old 07-03-2015, 03:46 AM   #11
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My niece had some teeth that were congenitally missing. My dad planned to put his grandkids through college (he did), but he never knew he also gave one of his grandchildren a full set of teeth! My sister would never be able to afford it otherwise. Thanks, Dad.


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Old 07-03-2015, 06:03 AM   #12
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Three weeks post FIRE and I find I have to get a dental implant- cost out of pocket will be about 9k.
Worse, it's up front so I will be lacking a canine for about 8 months. They will make me a device that I can wear, has a phony tooth, totally cosmetic but cannot eat with it.

Which would be worse for you, the hillbilly look or the cost?
hillbilly look or cost? Are you asking about the implant all together, or for the temporary for the the 8 months. If the temporary, what is the cost of it? Personally I would likely skip an expensive temporary fix if it is real pricey. I'd be more focused on getting the long term correct. But that is me.
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Old 07-03-2015, 09:30 AM   #13
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Three weeks post FIRE and I find I have to get a dental implant- cost out of pocket will be about 9k.
Worse, it's up front so I will be lacking a canine for about 8 months. They will make me a device that I can wear, has a phony tooth, totally cosmetic but cannot eat with it.

Which would be worse for you, the hillbilly look or the cost?


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Is that the cost for 2? I have 2 implants. It cost me total about 9K.
One of them was a front canine. I had a gap for the 9 month duration. I did not use a device to cover it. I am a man, so I did not care much.
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Old 07-03-2015, 09:45 AM   #14
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Is that the cost for 2? I have 2 implants. It cost me total about 9K.

One of them was a front canine. I had a gap for the 9 month duration. I did not use a device to cover it. I am a man, so I did not care much.

It's for one including the final crown.
Oddly the last one I had was back when I lived in Orange County- the oral surgeon was in Newport Beach so theoretically one might think he would have been super expensive but it was only 5k total. This guy is in St Louis where it seems like things would be less expensive because of the area.

I wish I could have a "don't care" attitude about a missing canine for 9 months!!!


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Old 07-03-2015, 10:04 AM   #15
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I'd get a second opinion on that cost, it seems VERY high. I had one quoted to me in Chicago last year for $5300 all in. I went with a bridge again instead for $3200. Since your paying cash it is worth shopping around.
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Old 07-03-2015, 10:09 AM   #16
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I think dental "insurance" is one of the biggest scams out there. As best as I can tell, if I signed up for the plan through my DW's employer, they would cover a couple of cleanings and an annual exam/bitewings. All this for the "oh so reasonable $15/month". Of course, if you need any significant work done, you are OUT OF LUCK. So, it's not INSURANCE at all in my opinion.


My mother has had lots of dental issues and so I am religious about my dental care...floss, floss, floss!!! So far, so good!
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Old 07-03-2015, 10:13 AM   #17
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It does seem high. I wouldn't care about the hillbilly look people that know me would understand, ones that didn't that's their issue. A dear co-w*rker set the example for me, she had a eye removed due to cancer. She came back a week later head held high, as I recall it was two months before she could get a prosthetic eye. Made me love and respect her all the more. Unfortunately five years later the cancer returned, that sweet woman w*rked till 71 died at 72.
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Old 07-03-2015, 10:22 AM   #18
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I'd get a second opinion on that cost, it seems VERY high. I had one quoted to me in Chicago last year for $5300 all in. I went with a bridge again instead for $3200. Since your paying cash it is worth shopping around.

I'm going to for sure. I called my general dentist who originally referred me to the guy and told him in wanted another name.



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Old 07-03-2015, 10:23 AM   #19
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I think dental "insurance" is one of the biggest scams out there. As best as I can tell, if I signed up for the plan through my DW's employer, they would cover a couple of cleanings and an annual exam/bitewings. All this for the "oh so reasonable $15/month". Of course, if you need any significant work done, you are OUT OF LUCK. So, it's not INSURANCE at all in my opinion.


My mother has had lots of dental issues and so I am religious about my dental care...floss, floss, floss!!! So far, so good!

I agree.
I've taken really good care of my teeth forever. When I was young, maybe 10, my dentist announced to me that while my teeth were white and straight they were "weak" and I would probably have issues later in life. He was right.


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Old 07-03-2015, 10:40 AM   #20
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dental insurance is a scam. 1) you can sign up with the dentists often for less than what you get through your insurer. 2) they only pay for some types of things not all 3) they only then pay 80% up to a max which is usually $1000 or $2000 .. ie so who takes out insurance on a $1000 risk?? Cleanings are roughly $70 x 2=$150. If your paying $12-15 a month pp which most plans charge, all your doing is paying for the cleanings...and if I time it right, I can get a 20-25% discount at times when the dentist is slow and runs a special. When I retired I dropped the dental insurance and the vision insurance. I'll negotiate instead..and for glasses they will show me the cheaper glasses for sure My dental use to be $6/month so then I was still making out, but when they kept upping it, it became useless.
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