Dental implants are the state-of-the-art way to replace lost teeth, but are they affordable? Does dental insurance pay for the procedure?
Unfortunately, patients are mostly on their own when it comes to dental implants. Some insurance pays only for adding the crown to an implant, but not for the procedure itself. Although this method of tooth replacement is the best way to prevent bone loss and future cost, the insurance industry still regards this as an elective procedure and does not cover much of the cost.
Dental Insurance May Not Make a Dent in The Cost of Dental Implants
Whether you have dental insurance through your place of employment or you seek it out yourself, you may find a yearly tap on the maximum benefit for dental services. Typically, this is about $1,000-$1,500 a year, which is only a dent in the cost of dental implants. If you are not able to afford the full cost of the procedure, clearly you need to find another option.
Dental implants conservatively cost $3,000-5,000, which makes the investment a sizable one, especially if you need several teeth replaced or are interested in full mouth dentures secured by implants. If you need implants and do not have a large stock of cash to pay for them, what are your options, aside from choosing another form of tooth replacement?
Finding Lower Cost Providers
Comparative shopping among local providers might save you money. New practices might offer lower costs as they attempt to build practices. If you work with a dental school where you have care provided by student dentists or resident dentists working under the supervision of faculty members who are licensed dentists, you might be able to save 30 to 50% of the cost. Some patients even travel abroad to cut the cost of the implant procedure by up to 80%.
In considering a lower cost provider, the biggest issue you might have is trust.
Self-Financing Your Dental Implants
While you can finance your dental expenses on your MasterCard or Visa, another option is to obtain a healthcare credit card, such as CareCard, which can be a good way of separating your dental costs from other purchases. Financing your dental care can be a great investment, but not all dentists accept this plan. In addition, this card requires fixed monthly payments.
Another option is a healthcare lending plan such as Prosper Healthcare, which allows you to finance amounts from $2,000-$3,500, often with little or no interest for well-qualified holders.
Dental Discount Plans
Another option is to find a dental discount plan. In return for yearly or monthly fees, you can receive discounts that often range from 10 to 60% on services. For example, four major dental plans offered in Utah provide the following savings on components of the implant process:
- Surgical placement of implant body – 20% off
- Abutment supported cast metal crown (base metal) – $492 versus $1,087 full price
- Abutment supported cast metal crown (noble metal) – $532 versus $1137 full price
- Implant supported metal crown- $644 versus $1,225 full price
Dental discount plans go into effect the first day of service.
Oral Surgery of Utah Can Help You Obtain Dental Implants
While there are ways to afford dental implants, planning ahead is important. By doing so, you can obtain a service that you might think is beyond your ability to obtain. If you need one or more dental implants, Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery of Utah works with dental discount plans and will work with you to find a payment option that will work for you.