Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
High dental bills? I sympathize!
Old 12-12-2017, 10:55 AM   #1
Moderator Emeritus
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 44,572
High dental bills? I sympathize!

This is a thread for posts from those of us with crummy teeth, to complain about the resulting high bills from dentists and/or oral surgeons.

Those without crummy teeth can just grin like Cheshire Cats as they read the thread, and self congratulate on your superb oral hygiene and obvious superiority in keeping up with your teeth.

Those who are not yet retired, may find this useful in trying to predict their retirement spending.

ANYWAY.... here's what I paid over the last 5 years, including payments to my dentist (for root canals, cavities, crowns, xrays, cleaning), to my oral surgeon (for five implants), and for drugs they prescribed:

2017: $8,135
2016: $6,050
2015: $2,362
2014: $220
2013: $3,221

That adds up to $19,988 (almost $20K! ) over just five years. Good thing I have some wiggle room for unexpected expenses in my spending allotment. And no, I don't want to travel even a mile farther for my dentistry, much less to some banana republic, just to save a buck - - I like my dentist.

How about you? Anybody spend a lot on dental work in the past five years? Misery loves company so that's why I'm asking.
W2R is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 12-12-2017, 11:12 AM   #2
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 2,118
your post made me check, as DH and I have had 3 implants, 2 root canals, an apicoectomy and a few crowns.
We have spent $16,200 in the past 5 years, including dental costs and insurance premiums (couldn't find information for any medications associated with that though).
I still have one more crown coming up next month, then hopefully we are both good for awhile!
Sure wish I had lived in an area that had fluoridated water growing up :-)
__________________
You are no longer in a savings mode.
You are now in a slow spend down mode.
pacergal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 11:14 AM   #3
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 4,787
Quote:
Originally Posted by W2R View Post
This is a thread for posts from those of us with crummy teeth, to complain about the resulting high bills from dentists and/or oral surgeons.

<snip>How about you? Anybody spend a lot on dental work in the past five years? Misery loves company so that's why I'm asking.
I'd say I spent at least that from 2009-2014 (retired in 2014). That included 4 implants, cleanings, occasional cavities and at least one crown. I was in the middle of the work on 2 implants when I retired- implants had been placed but were healing before the prosthetic teeth could be installed. I have an ancient bridge that's likely to fail at some point and I will do exactly what I did when a tooth supporting the other one failed: replace the failed tooth with an implant and put one in the gap covered by the bridge.

I can't complain. I have full confidence in my dentist and the oral surgeon. Years ago when there was some small tax rebate as part of a stimulus package, DH, our dentist and the dentist's BIL were on their way back home from an outing sponsored by our church. Dentist and his BIL started talking about what they'd do with their rebates and asked DH what we were doing. DH said we didn't get one because of our income (I was still working and the threshold was $150K IIRC). So, even though the dentist had his wife working as a receptionist, they were pulling in under $150K. No idea what the oral surgeon is making but with an MD as well as a DDS degree, I'd say he earned it.
athena53 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 11:23 AM   #4
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
MRG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 9,629
This year I've done 2 crowns, 1 root canal and it will require a crown after the fact! Ouch.

The good news is other than cleaning DW has never needed any dental work done.
MRG is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 11:28 AM   #5
Moderator Emeritus
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 44,572
Quote:
Originally Posted by athena53 View Post
I'd say I spent at least that from 2009-2014 (retired in 2014).
Ouch. Well, maybe there's hope if you aren't still spending that much. I have been assuming that my teeth will cost this much from here on out. But now that I think of it, in 2014 I only spent $220 for two cleanings. My dentist isn't overcharging, and in fact gives me free work now and then. It's not him, it's my (crummy!) teeth.

Pacergal, that's a lot too! I grew up with flouridated water, oh well.

MRG, those crowns do add up, thats for sure.
W2R is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 11:30 AM   #6
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Alberta/Ontario/ Arizona
Posts: 3,393
Crown repairs, implants, root canals, new crowns. On and on. Have probably spent $25-30k over past 5 years for both of us. It’s pretty expensive but what are going to do? Get some back on our tax return.
Danmar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 11:31 AM   #7
Moderator Emeritus
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 44,572
Quote:
Originally Posted by Danmar View Post
Crown repairs, implants, root canals, new crowns. On and on. Have probably spent $25-30k over past 5 years fo4 both of us. Itís pretty expensive but what are going to do?
Exactly! Like I told my dentist, my teeth are my number one priority right now.
W2R is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 11:49 AM   #8
Moderator Emeritus
aja8888's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Posts: 12,322
Last year (DW) - two new bridges, a few crowns, etc, etc - $11,000

This year (DW) - Root canal, cleaning, etc. - $1,100

*************************

This year over 10 months (Me) - $35,000 - two root canals, repair split tooth, repair tooth with a gold post that broke, lots of porcelain crowns (22?), cleanings, etc.

Tomorrow (12/13 - 9:15 am) - two implants (not the crowns yet) - $4,600+

I figure two more porcelain crowns for the implants, a partial bridge replacement, and some adjustments are all that is left for this year. (est - $6,000+).

I don't even want to add this all up.

I had a bad start in life with parents that were financially pretty poor and lacked the knowledge about dental care and preservation. When I was in the military, I had a lot of dental work done and also broke some front teeth in a car accident later in life. Within the last 18 months, all this old dental work is falling apart.
__________________
Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth...philosopher Mike Tyson
aja8888 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 11:50 AM   #9
Moderator
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 12,740
Dental expenses picked up this year for me - 2 root canals, 2 crowns, 2 cavities, X-rays - over $3,000 out of pocket.

Next year, I am planning to have some cosmetic work done (porcelain veneers) - at least $2K out of pocket.

DW only requires cleanings...
FIREd is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 12:04 PM   #10
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 4,787
Quote:
Originally Posted by W2R View Post
Ouch. Well, maybe there's hope if you aren't still spending that much. I have been assuming that my teeth will cost this much from here on out.
Yes, thanks, dental spending is way down. I floss, I use a Waterpik and a SoniCare toothbrush and have prescription toothpaste, a bite guard, and 4 cleanings per year. All of those have kept major problems at bay for a long time, but I still anticipate the occasional expensive problem because I have a lot of old fillings and crowns and the bridge I mentioned earlier. This is one of many reasons I'm glad I never planned to retire on SS alone.


It's pretty sad to read responses to the occasional item stuck in my FaceBook feed titled "Affordable Dental Plans for Seniors" (which is nothing but a link to a Yahoo search on the topic). So many people out there can't afford much except extractions when things get unbearable.
athena53 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 12:08 PM   #11
Moderator Emeritus
aja8888's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Posts: 12,322
Quote:
Originally Posted by athena53 View Post
Yes, thanks, dental spending is way down. I floss, I use a Waterpik and a SoniCare toothbrush and have prescription toothpaste, a bite guard, and 4 cleanings per year. All of those have kept major problems at bay for a long time, but I still anticipate the occasional expensive problem because I have a lot of old fillings and crowns and the bridge I mentioned earlier. This is one of many reasons I'm glad I never planned to retire on SS alone.
Except for your first sentence and using prescription toothpaste and bite guard, that sounds like me before the dam broke!
__________________
Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth...philosopher Mike Tyson
aja8888 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 12:12 PM   #12
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
easysurfer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 10,805
Don't have the numbers in front of me, but probably spent close to 10k. An implant, couple of crowns come to mind.
__________________
Have you ever seen a headstone with these words
"If only I had spent more time at work" ... from "Busy Man" sung by Billy Ray Cyrus
easysurfer is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 12:20 PM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Huntsville, AL/Helen, GA
Posts: 4,563
I snapped a tooth off at the gum, and an oral surgeon charged $895 to remove the tooth and do a graft for an implant. He charges $2250 for the implant, and the abutment will be $500. Then the crown will be $850. It really adds up.

I ran up to Illinois and got the implant done for $900. Other than waiting for the novicaine to take effect, it was no more than a 7 minute job.

If I was going for mega dental work, I would do some medical tourism. For a $20k dental job, you can get it done in Alagores, Mexico (Yuma, AZ) for $4k. There are over 200 modern dental clinics there.

Budapest also has over 200 dentists with patients from the UK and other countries taking budget airlines from all over Europe. Their rates are comparable with Mexico, and the quality of care is excellent. Even after paying for flights, it is much cheaper to go there for dental work than at home if you are going for mega dental work.
Bamaman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 12:25 PM   #14
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Western NC
Posts: 2,301
I think my dad's at double that over the last 5 years.

Always had bad teeth (crowns, bridges, etc.) but since he was also a heavy smoker, and still goes through a few cigarettes daily, he had to have major prep work to build up the bone for his over a dozen (so far) implants.

Even mom had terrible teeth, so I'm dreading my later years.

Told the kids last year "I am now officially old" after my first root canal/crown last year.
ncbill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 12:39 PM   #15
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Teacher Terry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 5,231
50k-ugh!
Teacher Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 01:03 PM   #16
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Dawg52's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Central MS/Orange Beach, AL
Posts: 8,692
Two implants with crowns = $7k over the last 3 years. No more hard nuts for me!
__________________
Retired 3/31/2007@52
Investing style: Full time wuss.
Dawg52 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 01:03 PM   #17
Moderator Emeritus
aja8888's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Posts: 12,322
Once this thread is over, I may start one on how many surgically implanted metal or synthetic parts do we have in our bodies. That inventory would include posts, plates, joints, screws, wire, etc.
__________________
Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth...philosopher Mike Tyson
aja8888 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 01:38 PM   #18
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
teejayevans's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,527
I was just told that I need a crown (I have decay under the filling) plus some other cavities, abnormal amount for me.
Did any of you get a second opinion? I don’t have any symptoms and dentist wants to do this right away, so I’m not comfortable with diagnosis. Just wondering those who have needed expensive dental work knew they needed it.
teejayevans is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 01:41 PM   #19
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
happy2bretired's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 1,541
Just a few years ago my dentist finally completed placing crowns on all my molars, some also had had root canals. I thought I was all set for a few years. Now, some of those molars with those nice crowns, are vertically splitting below the gum line. Iíve had 4 teeth pulled in the last 3 years. I have one implant and working on another one. The other two missing teeth are not going to be replaced. They are very last, upper teeth in the back, on both sides. My dentist said they really donít need to replaced...so Iím not replacing those..going toothless. I have always taken good care of my teeth with dentist visits/cleaning every six months. I do use a mouth guard and I do clinch my teeth at night so I think thatís part of my problem. So far the cost has been around $3500 per implant. I just donít want any more.
happy2bretired is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-12-2017, 02:00 PM   #20
Moderator Emeritus
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 44,572
Quote:
Originally Posted by aja8888 View Post
Last year (DW) - two new bridges, a few crowns, etc, etc - $11,000

This year (DW) - Root canal, cleaning, etc. - $1,100

*************************

This year over 10 months (Me) - $35,000 - two root canals, repair split tooth, repair tooth with a gold post that broke, lots of porcelain crowns (22?), cleanings, etc.

Tomorrow (12/13 - 9:15 am) - two implants (not the crowns yet) - $4,600+

I figure two more porcelain crowns for the implants, a partial bridge replacement, and some adjustments are all that is left for this year. (est - $6,000+).

I don't even want to add this all up.

I had a bad start in life with parents that were financially pretty poor and lacked the knowledge about dental care and preservation. When I was in the military, I had a lot of dental work done and also broke some front teeth in a car accident later in life. Within the last 18 months, all this old dental work is falling apart.
I think you may be the "winner" with a total like yours is likely to be! Amazing. But, the silver lining to that cloud is that with modern dentistry, at least you and I can still eat and are not confined to cream of wheat and smoothies for the rest of our lives.

EDIT:: NO WAIT! TeacherTerry's dental bills are even higher!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teacher Terry View Post
50k-ugh!
W2R is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Dental implant and dental coverage fh2000 Health and Early Retirement 31 08-30-2014 12:49 PM
High return/High Expense ratio.......? Is it worth it? mannyahles FIRE and Money 18 01-30-2011 02:54 AM
GM a high risk, high return buy? laurence Stock Picking and Market Strategy 23 11-18-2008 03:01 PM
High salary vs. High cost of living article laurence FIRE and Money 30 05-25-2005 06:40 PM

» Quick Links

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:03 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.