Dental implants are among the most effective methods of restoring missing natural teeth. A dental implant is an artificial tooth root surgically implanted into your jawbone to replace a missing tooth and mimic all its functionalities.
People that have recently lost their teeth, whether through extraction, infection, or severe injuries, can benefit from dental implants.
While dental implants remain one of the most popular teeth replacement methods, they are often quite pricey.
So, how can you get cheap dental implants? This post takes you through all the possible methods to guarantee lower dental implant prices.
How Much Does a Dental Implant Cost?
Dental implants don’t come cheap, but how much do they cost? There are many factors that contribute to the total cost of dental implants, including:
Single Tooth Implant Prices
Dental implants cost an average of $1,500 – $5,000 per implant. Note that this is the price of a single implant (tooth replacement) and not the total cost of the procedure. If you need more teeth restored, the total cost may go higher.
In most cases, this cost covers the tooth root, the abutment (support), and a dental crown. Whenever you search for low-cost dental implants near me, you may find some offering implants for as low as $500. However, the additional procedures incur extra costs, so it is prudent to read the fine print first.
Cost of Full Mouth Dental Implants
Full mouth dental implants can take you back approximately $40,000. Some practices may charge way lower (even below $10,000) or higher (up to $90,000).
These prices are quite high for a single dental procedure. Fortunately, there are various ways to reduce these high prices to a manageable amount.
How to Find Low-Cost Dental Implants
The cost of dental implants may be much higher than what you could have budgeted. Fortunately, there are different methods that you can use to significantly bring down the total cost of the implants.
If you’re asking yourself, ‘how can I get dental implants free or low cost?’ Here are a few ways to try:
The most obvious way to reduce any medical expense is by using dental insurance for implants. There are many dental insurance covers that you can use to significantly reduce the total cost of your dental implants.
However, it would be prudent to note that not all dental insurance providers can cover implants, so it is advisable to contact your insurer before settling on the procedure.
If your provider covers implants, you are in for a treat. According to CIGNA, many dental insurance providers follow the ‘100-80-50’ rule. This means that most of them will cover 100% of any preventive treatments, 80% of the cost for basic procedures, and 50% for extensive procedures, such as dental implants.
Although this seems to be a good deal, there’s usually a catch, which may disqualify dental insurance as the best approach when you want to get cheap dental implants.
For instance, most dental insurance providers have very strict policies surrounding procedures like dental implants.
For starters, you must prove that getting implants is medically necessary in your case and that there’s no cheaper alternative available. Furthermore, some even have policies that restrict coverage in case there is a missing tooth before the dentist approves you for implants.
There’s also more: the waiting period is long and not to mention how expensive some of these plans are, especially if you’re using a family cover.
Nevertheless, most dental insurance providers may cover the associated costs, realistically bringing down the cost of getting dental implants.
Although this may not usually be at the top of most people’s minds, dental tourism is one of the best ways to get cheap dental implants. If you live in a relatively expensive place, like the US, heading to some countries in South and Central America where dental implant procedures are relatively cheap may be a great option.
For instance, if the cheapest dental implants in your area will take you back approximately $40,000 for the entire treatment, you can easily find the same procedure in a different country for as low as $10,000 or even below that.
You can spend only $5,000 or even less to cater to the transportation and accommodation costs while there, and you will save a significant amount.
Before settling on the country or dental clinic to visit, you should first conduct proper research to determine the best path to follow. You should also know the qualifications of the practitioner. This is why you ought to know the comparison between an orthodontist vs dentist.
For instance, you can conduct a quick online search for the best clinics and look at their customers’ reviews.
The biggest drawback to this method is that you may have to spend a little longer in that country for the dentist to monitor the progress of your treatment. Moreover, you may incur additional travel costs to the same clinic should you need a check-up. Alternatively, you can pay more to have it done near you.
Dental Discount Plans
Dental discount plans are great for finding cheap dental implants near you. These plans allow patients to pay a small monthly or annual fee for greatly discounted dental care services.
Although there are many types of dental discount plans to choose from, most of them function similarly in that:
The biggest drawback is that you may be limited to the dentists or clinics you can choose, some of which may be far from you. Nevertheless, this method shaves hundreds or even thousands off your dental implant costs.
Students studying to become dentists need patients for their training. In this case, they offer certain services, including low-cost dental implants, to patients as part of their training. You should not get concerned as these procedures are keenly supervised by their instructors, who are professional dentists, and you face no potential risks throughout the procedure.
The only downside to this method is that it may take longer as each step is to be graded. Moreover, while some dental schools offer such services, you may have to wait a little longer until the time they need to perform such procedures. In this case, you may have to submit your name to be added to the waiting list, as they may not offer walk-in services, as would be the case in dental clinics.
There are many clinical studies and research programs that require patients to conduct trials. You may find some that require patients for a dental implant research program. At times, the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) calls upon interested people with specific oral conditions to register for their clinical trials.
The treatment can be provided at a significantly reduced cost, or in some cases, you can find it free of charge. In fact, you can even get paid to take part in some of these trials.
You can check out the NIDCR platform and register for the clinical trials you may be eligible for as you seek low-cost dental implants for seniors.
Besides using dental insurance to finance part of your dental implant fees, there are other cheap dental implant payment plans to consider.
For instance, you can inquire from your provider if they allow flexible payment plans. This type of dental financing allows you to pay for the procedure by making small monthly payments. Ensure that you are upfront about what you can comfortably afford every month to avoid denting your finances.
You can also tap into your Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or Health Savings Account (HSA). These accounts have tax benefits that can help you significantly reduce the total cost of your dental implants.
How to Identify Free Dental Implant Scams?
It can be easy to fall prey to dental scams when searching online for cheap dental implants near me. Some of them are from outright fraudsters that may use dubious means to have you pay for the ‘dental implants’ or pay to book your appointment with their dentist, who doesn’t even exist.
In case you find any of these adverts online, be more careful and do not pay anything upfront until you have confirmed that you have seen a genuine dentist.
Other scams are from fraudulent dentists themselves!
You may run into an ad claiming to give out huge discounts on dental implants, while some even claim that you can get them for free! In this scenario, you should pay more attention to the fine details and be more inquisitive regarding the ‘promotion.’ You may find out that the total cost might be a lot higher than advertised.
The bottom line is that you always have to check out the fine print, be more inquisitive about the offers, and do not pay anything upfront unless you have had an appointment with a licensed dentist.
Dental Implant Alternatives
Getting dental implants is generally one of the most expensive dental procedures. Your dentist may recommend different options for teeth replacement, especially if you have more than two teeth to replace.
The most common dental implant alternatives are partial dentures and dental bridges if you need a couple of teeth replaced. If you require teeth replacement for the whole mouth, your dentist may recommend complete dentures, which may be way less expensive than getting full mouth dental implants.
You can also check out affordable denture implants, which cost much less than full mouth implants.
Here’s a complete implants vs veneers review for further insight.
It is possible to get dental implants for under $500 in some places. While you can get such ads by simply searching online for affordable dental implants near me, you have to consider the fine print, as this cost only caters to the implant and not the associated procedures, like abutment, crown, placement, etc.
Medicaid does not typically pay for dental implants, even to low-income earners. This is because the program is designed to provide basic medical cover, and implants are often regarded as cosmetic procedures, which may require one to use other means to pay.
The US V.A enables some registered veterans to get dental services, such as dental implants, at significantly reduced costs or completely for free.