We welcome people with dental insurance, just as we welcome those who do not have dental insurance. As far as we are concerned, everyone is the same. Dental Insurance is a benefit available to employees of certain companies and is a "contract" between the employer, employee, and the insurance company. You can come to Basic Dental and use your benefits, just like you can at any other dental office. However, we do not consider ourselves to be "partners" with the insurance company. We want to remain independent of them. You will find, though, that our fees are low enough that you will be well off coming to Basic Dental. When you come to our office, we will take care of your insurance forms and send them in for you. We will expect you to pay us, that day, what the insurance will not cover. The insurance company will pay us the remainder according to the terms of your insurance. Our ladies, who manage the front office, are insurance experts, having worked with dental insurance now for many years. They can answer almost any question and can probably tell you what your insurance will pay on any procedure because they have worked with every insurance company and every plan.
The easiest way to run a dental office is to have everyone pay cash at the time of service, no exceptions. That way we do not have so much paper work, do not have to keep track of what anybody owes us, and we do not have to send out bills. But for people with dental insurance, we have found that policy to be hard to administer and even a bit counter-productive. Because most of our client/patients do not have insurance, it would not be right to charge them a hidden fee for filling out and filing insurance forms, the bookkeeping involved, documentation, mailing, etc. that we have to do with the proper processing of insurance claims. In reality, insurance handling adds greatly to the amount of work at the front desk. We think that insurance should have to pay for the extra work involved, not the non-insured dental patient. So to answer the question, people who do not have insurance and pay in full at the time of service do get a discount.
Think about this, it is extremely rare to have insurance that pays for everything. Usually, with deductibles and co-pays, you will end up paying for something. And keep this in mind: insurance benefits max out at some arbitrary amount every year, usually $1000 (although that depends on the policy that your employer has negotiated). And it hasn't been raised in the last 25 years! It is getting so that a broken tooth that needs a crown, in most dental offices will cost more than $1000 by the time it is all completed. That is just one tooth! Insurance may pay 60-70% of that, if you are lucky. Most often you can figure that your insurance will cover 50%, which means you will pay $500 out of a $1000 dental bill. Not only will your money go further at Basic Dental, so will your insurance. For example, our fee for a porcelain fused to metal crown (very good crown) is $598. At 50%, your part will be $300, $200 less and you will still have some insurance benefits left for other teeth problems.
Our fees are lower on dental procedures where we can control the costs. For instance, our fees on fillings and crowns and root canals will be 30-40% lower than you will find elsewhere. Because we control the office overhead, we can control those fees better. Dentures and partials are another story. The actual costs (lab fees) to construct dentures and partials are out of our control and they are high. So they must be included in the finished costs and our fees on those will only be 15-20% lower. Cleanings are very time intensive and labor costs control those fees, so they may not be a lot lower. Really, the place where you will save money is in the fillings, crowns, bridges, and root canals.
Yes, for any proceedure, all you need to do is call our office, 888-3384. But, fee numbers probably will not mean anything to you, unless you have the fees from other offices to compare. We urge you to call other dental offices and get their prices. Call a lot of them and ask all the questions you can think of. I will tell you right now, that most of them will try to avoid a straight answer when it comes to fees. In some cases that is justifiable because it is hard to know exactly what a prospective patient needs. But you should not be afraid to check around, because it is your hard earned money that will be paying for the dentistry. It is not only okay to check out the fees of any office, it is the smart thing to do if you place any value on your money. Then call us and get all the information you can. Then make an informed choice.
Because we don't carry balances or bill you at the end of the month, dental services need to be paid for at the time it is done. That can be done with cash or check, of course. But we also accept credit cards. In fact, that is what a lot of people use. But there is also two things to keep in mind when you are trying to figure out how you are going to pay for dental work. One is that there is always more than one way to fix a tooth problem. You almost always have an expensive way to fix it and a less expensive way to fix it. We will always tell you about your options, the pros and cons, and then let you decide. The other is that when it comes to teeth, rarely do you have to do something right now. Pain and infection necessitate immediate action, but if you have no pain or infections, you can probably wait to fix something until you save up some money. Most treatment can be spread out so that you can afford to pay for it.
We are not really set up to handle dental phobics. We don't have nitrous oxide and we don't use drugs (other than local anesthetics) to try to get through dental procedures. If you are really apprehensive, you would probably be better off at another office. There are numerous local dentists that really try to work with dental phobics, but we are not in that number.
It depends on the handicap. We are a small office and are not set up to do much other than the basics. If this person needs special equipment or space, we may not be a good choice. You will need to call and give us some more information.
Yes, if they are cooperative. We think children are usually the best dental patients, but they can also be the worst. We are not equipped to handle behavioral problems here. If it appears that we will not be able to do the dental work, we will refer you to a good pedodontist (children's dentist).
We generally work Monday through Thursday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Sometimes we will work on Fridays.
We are located in Meridian, near the corner of Pine and Linder Rd. We are right across the street from the Meridian High School tennis courts. That is one reason we don't start up in the morning at 8:00 AM. Too many high school kids coming to school at that time. Three o'clock in the afternoon is pretty busy also.
Yes. You can get your teeth cleaned at the hygiene school (in Boise), which is now called Carrington College, for a fraction of what it costs in a regular dental office. It is even less than what we charge. Sometimes you can get a cleaning for $10, but the usual fee is more like $25. And they do a very thorough job. (We know because Dr. Brady was a clinical instructor there.) And it is quite an interesting experience. But it takes more time. That is the trade off. If you have not had your teeth cleaned in awhile and you have a lot of tartar and stain, and a lot of time, consider the hygiene school. You may save quite a bit of money. If you can't find their phone number, call us and we will give it to you.
That is good, because it shows you care about the cost of dental care. Just remember, the reason some offices use mail or flyer coupons, or groupons, is to get you in the door with a cheap "loss leader". They expect to lose a few bucks on a cleaning, and then make it up on fixing the cavities, and other problems, they find. After the coupon deal, you will probably find some pretty expensive dental treatment recommendations. Our advice: go to that dental office, get your teeth cleaned and checked, and get a treatment plan with fees listed. Then call us up and compare our fees. Better yet, come in, bring your treatment plan, check out our office and the dentists, see if you like us, get a second opinion and an estimate, and then decide what to do.
You very well could have developed a bunch of new problems. But a second opinion is an inexpensive and easy way to verify what you may be questioning. We would suggest that you come in and let us take a look. It may be well worth it, and it will put your mind at ease.
Obviously, we’re not for everyone. If you like going to "dental spa" to get your teeth laser-whitened while watching a movie on the ceiling, Basic Dental Care is not the place for you. If you're looking for exceptional dental care, but prefer to spend your hard earned money on things other than your dentists designer office, then we should talk.