Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Dental insurance

With the looming increase in our health insurance premiums just around the corner I am looking for ways to cut. One thing I am considering is the dental insurance I am currently paying for the kids. I pay $50 per month to cover the both of them through my dental insurance at work.  It cost $50 whether it's one kid or more.  DS will at some point (is it ever going to happen?!) soon be having his own dental insurance (or paying for it out of his pocket) and even if I left him on my insurance, I doubt he'll be using it anytime soon. He's out of the country and if he gets to come home for short few day visits I doubt I'd get him to spend the time to see a dentist!

So, basically I am paying $600 a year in dental insurance for one kid. The insurance we have has a $50 deductible (but not for cleanings). I looked up DD's last few cleaning appointments. For 2 visits this year, the charges totaled $393. She did have a sealant done one time (it had worn off a tooth I guess), but that is not the norm on her visits. That was $82. So if I had paid out of pocket this year, with no insurance, it would have cost me $475 instead of $600 in dental premiums. DS never made it to the dentist this year. He was in Australia the first 4 months and then the 2 months he was home he didn't get himself into see the dentist.

The insurance also covers a max of $2000 each year, so that is something to take in to consideration. I don't know, but it is also possible our dentist would take off a discount for a cash paying customer, so the out of pocket could be a bit less.

I'm not sure what to do. I haven't pulled the plug yet on the insurance. I do at least want to wait until DS has his ducks in a row and is covered through an employer plan. If he gets covered that way, I think I may drop the insurance on DD and just pay out of pocket for twice a year cleanings. If DS doesn't end up with his own plan, then I will keep both he and DD on my plan and just make DS reimburse me for $25/mo of it.


11 comments:

  1. Umm... I would personally take him off. Does he get his cleanings twice a year? $50 per month for dental is VERY high... ours is a little over $26 more for 1+ children over independent coverage. Or I guess, you could keep him there and make an arrangement to get reimbursed from him.

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  2. If you are able to keep your daughter and yourself up on brushing and flossing, I would still hesitate to drop the insurance. But, you have to do what's in the best interest of your situation. I'm thankful that I have dental insurance with a 7 dollars charge every two weeks. We get cleanings and xrays at 100 percent. I pay 60/40 for any work other than preventive. We also have a deductible of 50 dollars.

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  3. I have looked at other dental insurance plans and for our area I guess that is the going rate per month because I couldn't come up with anything cheaper/better. I don't need to drop myself, as my employer covers me at no charge. DS hasn't been to the dentist since last year. He went before his Australia trip but hasn't been since and now it's kind of up to him to take care of getting that done.

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  4. After I read everyone's comments I had to check to see what I pay. I pay $40 each pay check, so $80 per month but that's for all 4 of us. And we definitely use it.

    But if we didn't use it very much and it was only 1 child that didn't have major medical issues, I'd be tempted to get rid of it. I don't know if I could get over the fear of not being insured but if they only pay out $2000 a year but you pay $600 a year for that coverage, it seems like you would be ahead to just self insure. Especially if you only average $475 per year in dental costs. You could just start putting that $50 a month in an account and build it up so the money is there when you need it.

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    1. that's what I was thinking - just put some money aside each month for dental

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  5. $393 for two cleanings is very expensive. The dental school here charges 10 bucks for a cleaning. I would drop it and self-insure.

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  6. Services are expensive in our neck of the woods. I remember comparing orthodontic costs w/ a friend who lives in Missouri. Braces were double what theirs was. Plus, I am EXTREMELY picky about dentists. I have had a couple of very bad ones/experiences and I will NEVER go that route again. We have our dentist office and they are very good and I'm not going to a dental school or some cheaper dentist.

    DD's cleaning in July was $158 plus $82 for sealant (not normally needed). Her appointment in January was more, but she also had xrays that visit and some fluoride

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  7. As long as your own teeth are in relatively good shape. In a period of six months, I needed a root canal and crown, then a tooth cracked. Even with insurance I paid around $900 for both, might have been more. And apparently I still saved hundreds. You'll probably be okay without it. You can always sign back up for a dental plan if something happens -- assuming you can wait a day or two.

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  8. it's not me I am considering dropping dental insurance on - it would be for my daughter. I have coverage at no charge to me thru my employer. Son will be on his employer plan soon and I have to pay $50 a month for her to be covered. 1 or more kids is $50/mo thru my employer plan. That seemed reasonable for 2 kids, but $600 a year in premiums to cover 1 person for $2000 max coverage doesn't seem worth it, when she has healthy teeth and I can do 2 cleanings a year for her for less that that if I pay out of pocket

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  9. You should also consider dental plans as well, these differ considerably from insurance and offer individuals and families many more benefits. Things such as no annual limits, no waiting period and big discounts on some treatments.

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  10. It only makes sense that you drop the insurance, especially if you think you’re paying way more than what you get from it. Sparing a budget for dental service every month is pretty good idea. Just go with whatever works for you. What matters is you are taking care of the wellness of your family the way you deemed right. Stay healthy!

    Donnie White @ Good and Associates

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