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  • Aug 30th, 2017 6:22 pm
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Member
Jan 17, 2013
403 posts
70 upvotes
As others have pointed out, you cannot "save money" from buying dental insurance. The premiums you pay will always be more than the benefits/coverage you are getting. This is due to the maximum you can claim in any one year, coverage is less than 100%, typically 80%, major services cannot be claim until 3rd year, some services are not covered.

For example, take a look at this dental insurance plan. The premium for this plan is $120 per month. In a year, you would have paid $1,440.

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During the first year, you will lose $440, as the maximum you can claim is $1000. You will also lose $440 on the second year. Thereafter you will lose $190 each year.

Basic services such as hygiene are paid only at 80%. You need to pay the balance despite paying $1,440 annual premium. Which means for the first year, you will lose $440 plus the 20% that you are paying out of pocket.

Major service can only be claimed on the third year and only payable at 50%. If you are planning to do, say a crown, you can only do it on the third year, no earlier than that and on top of that, it is payable at 50% only. So if the crown is $800, you will pay $400 on your own. Your loss, if I may recap, is you will lose $440 plus 20% for basic services (such as your hygiene) and $400 for the crown.

Now, lets say, your major services costs $1600, payable at 50% means insurance company pays $800 and you pay $800. During that same year, you have your teeth cleaned and some basic work done, you have claimed so far $600 for the basic services. In this case, you will not be able to claim the full $800 for the major services because your basic and major is $800 + $600 = $1400. The combined maximum you can claim in your third year is $1250 so you can only claim $1250 out of that $1400. Your losses during this year is heavy: you pay $440 for the premium, plus 20% for the basic services, plus 50% for the major services and $150 ($1400-$1250) for the combined maximum.

So you see, if you are thinking of saving money by buying dental insurance, you are wrong. You are better off, having some disciplined, put the $120 every month into a savings account that will be used solely for dental expenses, rather than using the $120 to pay for monthly dental insurance premiums.

No company would operate at a loss and insurance companies is no different, they will not offer dental insurance at a loss.
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Mar 28, 2005
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Ontario / Quebec
stack21 wrote:
Aug 11th, 2017 4:19 am
As others have pointed out, you cannot "save money" from buying dental insurance. The premiums you pay will always be more than the benefits/coverage you are getting. This is due to ...................
...... the simple fact that the insurance company not only has to cover all the admin expense, staffing, buildings, overhead, etc. but also wants to make a profit.
And most of them, maybe all, make a very handsome profit each year.

Dental "insurance" is really a misnomer - one should insure against a large, unexpected loss that one can't cover themselves.
That's basically what house insurance is about - you buy coverage for a major, unexpected expense.

The only way one comes out ahead with "dental insurance" is if one gets a group plan through their employer. Here the employer chips in to pay most of the premium and it becomes an emplyee benefit with positive tax implications for the employer - the company providing the insurance still comes out ahead.
Newbie
Jul 31, 2017
24 posts
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4seasonscentre wrote:
Aug 11th, 2017 12:40 am
Tell your dentist you don't have insurance. When I was between school and my job I had no insurance. My dentist was in and out of my mouth in 10 minutes. Only cost me $90 :-)
It's true. The more dental insurance someone has the more the dentist will try to milk it. People rarely second guess any dental work a dentist wants you to do when someone else is paying for it.

If someone doesn't have dental insurance, they'll get a second opinion, or third, or not even do what the dentist says at all. Some people will later learn, they didn't need to do what the dentist said, and it was only to make them more money.
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Dec 27, 2009
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Ottawa, ON
BritishColumbian wrote:
Aug 18th, 2017 4:53 am
It's true. The more dental insurance someone has the more the dentist will try to milk it. People rarely second guess any dental work a dentist wants you to do when someone else is paying for it.

If someone doesn't have dental insurance, they'll get a second opinion, or third, or not even do what the dentist says at all. Some people will later learn, they didn't need to do what the dentist said, and it was only to make them more money.
They also charge more for the EXACT same work when they know it is someone with insurance.
Sr. Member
Jan 16, 2016
626 posts
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Hamilton, ON
Chickinvic wrote:
Aug 18th, 2017 11:29 am
They also charge more for the EXACT same work when they know it is someone with insurance.
The nasty thing is that you can't say "no insurance" and pay upfront, then send in a claim form, because the dentist office needs to sign the claim form!
Newbie
Jul 31, 2017
24 posts
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Chickinvic wrote:
Aug 18th, 2017 11:29 am
They also charge more for the EXACT same work when they know it is someone with insurance.
I can see that happening. The reason why a lot of people don't have insurance is because they don't have a career that makes enough money so the company can give them insurance coverage. That means the dentist will give them a discount. I have personally found out that when someone has dental coverage a dentist will fake products that don't exist just to make more money. And, if you go another dentist for a second opinion, they'll help the dentist cover up the problem was faked.
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Jul 31, 2017
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Altera wrote:
Aug 18th, 2017 12:17 pm
The nasty thing is that you can't say "no insurance" and pay upfront, then send in a claim form, because the dentist office needs to sign the claim form!
I am confused at what you are trying to say or why youd even want to do that. Either you have dental insurance and bill through that or you don't and pay cash.
Sr. Member
Jan 16, 2016
626 posts
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Hamilton, ON
BritishColumbian wrote:
Aug 18th, 2017 1:59 pm
I am confused at what you are trying to say or why youd even want to do that. Either you have dental insurance and bill through that or you don't and pay cash.
1. Tell them no insurance and pay cash rate (cheaper)
2. Send claim form by mail to insurance for reimbursement
3. Get cheque from insurance company.

This scenario cannot happen because the claim form needs to be signed by the dentist, so you won't be able to get the cash rate. I'm saying it sucks that you CAN'T enact this scenario.
Member
Jan 17, 2013
403 posts
70 upvotes
Altera wrote:
Aug 18th, 2017 9:13 pm
1. Tell them no insurance and pay cash rate (cheaper)
2. Send claim form by mail to insurance for reimbursement
3. Get cheque from insurance company.

This scenario cannot happen because the claim form needs to be signed by the dentist, so you won't be able to get the cash rate. I'm saying it sucks that you CAN'T enact this scenario.
Another way of looking at the scenario is it will help the insurance company pocket more money.


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Annual premium = $120 x 12 = $1440

After paying $1440 a year, you cannot even have your teeth cleaned twice a year (based on the insurance plan of 9-month recall frequency @ $120/month) and it's only paid at 80%. If you do the math, you end up paying more in premium than if you were to pay on your own.
Member
Jan 17, 2013
403 posts
70 upvotes
BritishColumbian wrote:
Aug 18th, 2017 1:57 pm
I can see that happening. The reason why a lot of people don't have insurance is because they don't have a career that makes enough money so the company can give them insurance coverage. That means the dentist will give them a discount. I have personally found out that when someone has dental coverage a dentist will fake products that don't exist just to make more money. And, if you go another dentist for a second opinion, they'll help the dentist cover up the problem was faked.
Yes, that is true. Some dentists gives a 10% discount to patients who do not have dental insurance. Some advertised this, some don't, for those who don't, phone them to ask if they give 10% to patients with no dental insurance.
Newbie
Jul 31, 2017
24 posts
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stack21 wrote:
Aug 18th, 2017 10:17 pm
Yes, that is true. Some dentists gives a 10% discount to patients who do not have dental insurance. Some advertised this, some don't, for those who don't, phone them to ask if they give 10% to patients with no dental insurance.
I prefer honesty over discounts. Do you think a dentist can stay in business giving everyone discounts?

I once had a dentist who was giving me a discount tell me I had six cavities while I was eating a semi-Raw Vegan lifestyle. That's a diet full of organic fruits and vegetables. Apparently, eating healthy is worse than drinking soda pop, chewing on candy and brushing with sugar. I usually have zero cavities or sometimes one in the least.

I recently met a salon receptionist where a dentist in Richmond, BC said she had 12 cavities, she got them all "fixed". "Thousands" of dollars and five appointments later...
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Mar 9, 2012
711 posts
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KITCHENER
Jimboski wrote:
Jul 15th, 2012 4:56 am
So quick question.. How does one obtain dental insurance and how does It work?
I always pay cash so I don't know the benefits of purchasing insurance and what not... I know insurance gives you coverage of how much the fees are every visit and what not but how much etc.

Thanks!
Sometimes your best bet is a part-time job that offers benefits.

I think plans bought online usually don't pay for themselves unless you need major work, even then, the savings isn't great.

Employer plans are usually good -- I have 2 children and 2 step-children, and right now I pay nothing for coverage (it's included) and 100% coverage except for major (crowns, orthodontics which are 50%).
Can't imagine how those do it without dental.

BTW: If you need coverage for kids, sometimes your city (or regional) government has coverage.

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