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Re: Large dental bill

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Message 1 of 10

Thank you. He gets 1200/month is social security.  That's it. 

 

Good news is he went in to just do the extraction and bone graft on his jaw and medical will cover that - the infection spread a little but not far.

 

I will have him look into enrolling in SSI.  THANK YOU!

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Conversationalist

Re: Large dental bill

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Message 2 of 10

You say he's low income, does he have SSI? If he does, he can get whatever he nees done for free. He may just jhave to go to a particular clinic/doctor. If his income is not low enough to qualify for SSI, look into a Dental Plan rather than Dental Insurance, which is much cheaper and has NO waiting period. 

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Conversationalist

Re: Large dental bill

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Message 3 of 10
ReTiReD51 - You should tell your neighbor to research Discount Dental Plans in your state. These are plans that charge a flat annual fee, which is always much less than what Insurance plans charge. I think this is a good way to minimize your actual cost for the dental work needed. The Dental Insurance Companies make knowing exactly what you are paying for way too difficult and, in my opinion, this strategy is not in the consumer's best interest.

Also, there is no waiting period with Dental Plans.
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Recognized Social Butterfly

Re: Large dental bill

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Message 4 of 10

Before you enroll him in a dental program, make sure they have no exceptions to a pre-existing oral condition.

 

My neighbor after he became Medicare age signed up for a dental plan that wouldn’t take effect until after a year of enrollment and premiums. After the year had passed he went to his dentist for the repair and was told that the insurance wouldn’t cover the several thousand dollars of work. If I remember correctly the work he was planning to have done on his teeth was caused by his neglect several years ago to have some needed teeth pulled which created his current problems. So the insurance refused to cover any of the dental work.

 

Read the fine print to make sure there is no exclusion for pre-existing conditions.

 

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Valued Social Butterfly

Re: Large dental bill

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Message 5 of 10

johnp478539 wrote:
He IS a veteran and he does visit the VA for medical issues. Unfortunately, they do not cover dental for some reason.

For Veterans

VA Dental

 

VA Dental Benefits

 

If not applicable to any of these classes of Veterans, this may be a better way to secure insurance - maybe, you will have to check.  Think it is still Delta Dental but maybe it is better or cheaper, I haven't read the fine details.

 

VA Dental Insurance Program

 

edited to add:

Veteran Patient Information - VA Dentistry

 

Looks like if he was homeless instead of low income, he might be able to get some care !  Woman Frustrated

 

 

 

 

 

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Info Seeker

Re: Large dental bill

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Message 6 of 10
He IS a veteran and he does visit the VA for medical issues. Unfortunately, they do not cover dental for some reason.
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Re: Large dental bill

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Message 7 of 10
Thank you so much. And i agree that it is important to address immediately. Much much appreciated!
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Valued Social Butterfly

Re: Large dental bill

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Message 8 of 10

There maybe a few alternatives-

 

If there is a dental school close to where he lives, you might check with them on performing the needed care.

 

There is a healthcare credit card available for extending the payments - sometimes they offer interest free for a specific time period.

Care Credit

 

It sounds like to me that he needs to see an oral surgeon NOW - they can remove the rest of the tooth and stop the pain, hopefully.  This is very dangerous since infection can set in and spread to other parts of the body - brain especially.

 

Take care of this NOW so that the area has time to heal before beginning the bridge work.  I am surprised that the professional which he saw didn't tell him this.  

 

Depending upon his age and physical and mental condition, somebody may need to be with him for this surgery and some routine care afterwards.

 

Personally, I wouldn't mess with insurance but if you decide to go this route, make sure understand the policy as to whom takes the plan and what is covered, for how much - compared to not having it.

 

Depending upon his age, a partial might be cheaper than a bridge and it would be easier on him as far as the prep work.

 

More the concern, might be what is going to happen when he cannot care for himself and everyone is so spread out.  Families need to begin thinking about this rather than when they are forced to make some tough decisions.

 

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Valued Social Butterfly

Re: Large dental bill

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Message 9 of 10

You did not mention this but is he a military veteran?

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Info Seeker

Large dental bill

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Message 10 of 10

Dear community,

 

My dad (late 70s; OK health) needs a dental operation. Specifically he needs a bridge for the second to last molar (upper left side) that the Doctor says will run him around $3,500. He lives in California and doesn't have dental insurance. We looked into signing him up with the Delta Dental offered through AARP but he would need to wait one year before being eligible for receiving coverage from Delta for the procedure. The tooth rotted and fell out and there are remnants of the tooth under the gum, which need to come out and which are causing him mild pain.

 

Managing his care are his two daughters and me (his son). He lives alone and is very low-income.  We all live in differernt states (New York, CA, and Oklahoma) and have varying income levels. Right now we can't afford covering the entire operation. I am thinking that we need to just do the operation and just come up with a payment plan.

 

I'm open to any/all helpful suggestions regarding paying for the operation.

 

I'm also interested to learn about how to properly structure our finances (as his children) so that when future large dental payments come up, we have our ducks in a row.  I'm thinking that we should enroll him in one of the Delta plans at least.


Thanks so much.

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