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Old 09-12-2003, 03:37 AM   #1
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Post 5k dental work needed, Yikes! Need advice.

Here is a list of what I need done. I have moderate gum disease. 4 areas of scalings-$700. UR surgery-$750. LR surgery-$675. UL Surgery-$1375. LL surgery-$675. Stent impression-$50 (for grafts). "LL" free gigival grafts-$675. Grand total-$5062. My insurance only covers $1000 per work per year, and then it is only covered at 60%. Obviously this work will have to be done over the next 4-5 years for affordibility purposes. There are no guarantees that after having this all done that I will not need dentures somewhere down the road. I am a 40 year old female. I am covered under my husbands dental plan. (Aetna). Has anybody had this work done, and is it worth the expense? Would'nt it just be easier to have them pulled and get dentures? My husband periodically gets laid off and then we have no coverage, if he gets laid off we will then have to pick up health coverage for him under Cobra, and I will have to do without the dental work. Can anybody share any experiences? Advice?

 
Old 09-12-2003, 04:07 PM   #2
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Hi MyOMy

I was fitted with dentures (full upper, partial lower) last December so I'll say right off the bat that you should avoid dentures if you can. If you would like to get some idea of what it's like to get dentures there are a few threads in this forum you can read through. Save your natural teeth unless it's not possible or practical. I have no idea what your quote is supposed to mean, it sounds really vague, but I thought you might like to know that dentures and full mouth extractions will likely cost about $5000 too. You wouldn't be able to stretch the work out over several years. You also might want to consider getting a second opinion and estimate if only to confirm the first dentist's diagnosis and to get a competitive price for the work. That second opinion could save you hundreds of dollars. Good luck!

 
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Old 09-13-2003, 11:05 PM   #3
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By all means, do everything possible to save your teeth. That said, before you commit to that much work, get a second opinion. Some dentist are money hungry and recommend procedures that may not really be necessary, or may cause more problems down the line.

 
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Old 09-14-2003, 12:43 AM   #4
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Are dentures really that bad? I mean when you hear it from the dentists they act like they're the best thing since sliced cheese, lol and implants where I live cost about 1500$ a piece, yikes, I've never known anybody who had dentures, but am having to consider them as we speak, does it change the way you talk, and eat?

 
Old 09-14-2003, 08:01 AM   #5
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Hi again MyOMy,

Are dentures really that bad? That depends on the person. For some, dentures mean a return to a more normal life where they finally have a pain free mouth, eat foods they haven't been able to in a long time and finally being able to smile again without being ashamed of their appearance. To others, dentures are a constant source of frustration because they don't behave anything like their natural teeth and they continue to be ashamed of their appearance because they think everybody looking at them knows they're wearing dentures. Other people feel like they've lost a part of their body, a leg or arm for instance, and have a very difficult time coming to grips with the loss. Losing your teeth and getting dentures is a life changing event. How an individual deals with it depends on their attitude.

To answer your last question, yes, dentures change the way you talk and eat. When you speak your tongue interacts with other parts of your mouth to form a letter or sound. When a denture is in the mouth the space inside becomes smaller and the tongue needs to relearn the new boundaries of the mouth. It usually takes a couple of weeks to a couple of months for speech problems to clear up. Eating with dentures is COMPLETELY different than eating with natural teeth. Dentures aren't anchored in your mouth like real teeth. The lowers just rest on the gums and the uppers stay up by virtue of a vacuum between the roof of your mouth and the denture palette. Without going into details, you have to completely relearn how to eat with dentures.

I was quoted about $1500 each for implants too so that tells me dental costs are about the same where you live as where I live. My guess of $5000 for you to get dentures will be about right. If you're seriously considering dentures read the denture threads in this forum to get an idea of what is involved and what you might expect to go through. Get a second opinion and estimate. Talk to the dentist (both of them) about dentures as an option. You owe it to yourself to at least make an informed decision.

Yos

 
Old 10-03-2003, 05:48 AM   #6
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I was at the dentist today and was told I needed $4500.00 worth of work. The funny thing is the salesperson("Consultant") thinks it is like spare change. It was like she was selling me a car. Anyway I am getting a 2nd opinion and I can put the surgury part on my medical insurance. (my dental maxes out at $1000.00). Also when your spouse gets laid of you may be eligible for medicaid or something of that nature. I FEEL your pain! Good Luck! :}
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Old 10-03-2003, 05:59 PM   #7
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5yrman,your $4500 is almost as bad as my $5000.LOL. How can you get it put on your medical insurance? We have excellent medical coverage,but i doubt it would cover my periodontal work. I am planning on getting the work done over the next 4-5 years as my dental insurance pays for it. I have 1000 max per year, and they will pay for 60% of the work. I too, wonder if all this work is necessary, or if they are just taking our money. Keep me posted if you get your second opinion.

 
Old 10-03-2003, 06:43 PM   #8
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Unfortunately, dentist's fees are not regulated. They may charge whatever the community will bear. That might be one reason why so many Americans have gingivitis or periodontal disease. One article I read years ago said about 80% of American will have it at some point. I wonder what that number might be now???

 
Old 10-05-2003, 02:04 PM   #9
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Insurance is a scam as far as I am concerned...Wouldn't it be nice if say for instance that you did not use your $1000 dental insurance every year that you could Roll Over the unused portion to next year? Or at least 50 percent of it...Cingular Wireless rolls over unused minutes so I want a Roll Over on my dental insurance too!

 
Old 10-08-2003, 06:43 AM   #10
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My pet peeve 'dentist phrase'..."It's an investment" HA! All you can ever get in return is to make the 'investment' over and over! I'm no stockbroker, but this type of 'investment' compares to Enron!

I am checking into Canada for a dentist. Some of the fee's are 1/2 what they are here. The American Dollar is worth more there, too. Say you need to spend $150 in US, in cananda, it's only $100. With thousands needing to be spent, that's a big savings.

I'd say stay away from the bigger wealthier cities, but this is what I plan to do next year....After I SELL MY HOME, of course!!!

I have spent 1000's and 1000's, still not done. Trying to save all I can. Only after I spend out a bunch, it's a couple years of so before I can do more. Know what happens then....I have to fix what I've already had done! Crowns don't last forever. Thats fine, if it's just one or two, but a mouthful...your talking serious money.

They absolutely act as though you can pull that kind of cash out of you 'beep'! Dentist are as bad as loan sharks. I'm trying to talk my son into dental school after college......now THAT"S an investment!!!

My advise, however, is concurring with the others, SAVE every natural tooth you can. Your problems are NOT over with dentures....they may have just begun.
MUCH MUCH LUCK!
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Old 10-08-2003, 09:10 AM   #11
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MyOMy
Look at this just as you would if you were going to hire someone to repair something in your home. Do your homework and learn all you can first.

All dentists are business men. Some good and some not so good, many are not interested in just doing what is necessary, but want to book as much incomes as possible.

You could call one of the Dental Schools if there is any in your area. They do dentistry much cheaper and all work is overseen by experienced professionals.

An old article from readers digest questions the honesty of dentists which shows price differences,,,as they say,,buyer beware.

Good Luck

[Edited to remove website with advertising.]

[This message has been edited by Well-come (edited 10-08-2003).]

 
Old 12-04-2003, 10:53 AM   #12
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Re: 5k dental work needed, Yikes! Need advice.

You've probably had most of your dental work done by none. But you and your entire household can save up to 80% on all dental services.

[Edited to remove website with advertising.]

Last edited by Well-come; 12-04-2003 at 05:26 PM.

 
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