Are The Costs of Dental Visits Keeping You Away From The Chair? Part 1

Are you like thousands of people in the United States that would like to establish and maintain a treatment relationship with your local dental professional?  Are you really interested in protecting yourself and your family from the damages and long-term risks of untreated periodontal disease?  Is the cost of keeping up with this phase of your general health prohibitive for your budget?  Well, if you answered yes to ANY of these questions, you need to follow along with me today while we discuss some suggestions on how to save money on those dental visits.  According to the 2013 Dental Care Affordability and Accessibility study, over half of Americans with dental insurance leave a dental problem like a toothache or bleeding gums untreated due to the cost of treatment.  If there is no dental insurance, understandably, the percentage is almost 70%.  I want to share with you some tips that I have discovered that might help make that trip to the dentist less expensive and, hopefully, more enjoyable.

Get insurance

This is probably the most obvious way to help ensure that you won’t pay high out-of-pocket dental expenses.  Though the rates are likely to vary, you can get information on available plans by going to as well as other locations on the web.  Do a search and see what pops up!  You might be surprised!  Many of these plans are available for $15 to $25 per month, depending on the carrier you choose, location and, of course, the policy options you need or desire.

Many dental policies will cover on a basic 100-80-50 plan.  This means that 100% of preventative and diagnostic costs are covered, approximately 80% of the cost of basic procedures that include fillings and extractions are covered, and 50% of major services such as crowns and dentures are covered.  Many of these plans have an annual cap of perhaps $1,000 or $1,500 that is included.  This means that once they have paid the $1,000 or $1,500 in charges, then you are responsible for the remaining portion for the rest of the year.   Even if you don’t have any problems, it is always a good option to have something in place just in case you get a surprise that requires some major dental work.

Have you ever considered a discount plan?

This option is fairly popular.  You basically pay an annual fee, let’s say $80 to $120 each year, and this allows you to get discounts ranging from 10% to 60% on all of your dental visits, services and procedures.  This type of plan has no annual maximum and it will allow discounts on cosmetic procedures like whitening which are not generally covered in conventional dental insurance plans.   Again, prices will likely vary, depending on location, carrier and options desired.

There are more tips that I want to share with you and I will do so next time.  I hope you will come back next week and we will talk about more tips on saving money on those oh so vital dental visits.  In the meantime, remember that your Periodontist on Long Island can identify and treat gum disease in any member of your family.  Call Dr. Scharf at (631)661-6633 or pay him a visit online at and let him tell you how he can treat gum disease with a laser instead of a scalpel.



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