Dentures are a fantastic solution for anyone who’s missing teeth, especially if you want to restore your perfect smile with a full set of teeth. However, there’s one big drawback to dentures: they’re incredibly expensive, and they aren’t covered by Medicare.

While it might not be possible to get dentures for free, there are ways to save significantly. If you’re in need of dentures, you simply need to know how you can cut costs and find discounts on any kind of dentures.

The Cost of Dentures

Like all dental work, dentures aren’t cheap. They can come with a high price tag – which is why it’s important to understand their cost before deciding on dentures.

Fortunately, there are a few different types of dentures to choose from. And the dentures you choose can lower the price and your out-of-pocket cost.

Complete dentures, which can be permanent or removable, are made to replace your entire set of teeth. A set of complete dentures covers both your upper and lower jaws. Complete dentures can be made from a variety of materials, and they can either be affixed to your jaw or easily removed whenever you’d like. A set of complete dentures can range in cost from $300 to $5,000 per plate (top or bottom), bringing the total price range to $600 to $10,000 according to Authority Dental.

Partial dentures are dentures that can be used by those who still have a few teeth. These dentures are fitted to your mouth to fill any gaps left by missing teeth. While partial dentures don’t cover as much of the jaw as a set of complete dentures, they are similar in price. You can expect to pay about $300 to $5,000 per plate for partial dentures.

Implant-supported dentures are sets of dentures that are affixed to your jaw with the help of dental implants. They can be a complete set of dentures or partial sets – implant-supported dentures are attached to dental implants inserted into the jaw by a dentist or oral surgeon, meaning they can be custom fit to your mouth and needs. However, because implant-supported dentures require a surgical procedure, they are more expensive. Implant-supported dentures can cost between $3,500 and $30,000 per top or bottom set. A full set ranges from $7,000 to $90,000, with average prices around $34,000.

How to Get Discounts On Your Dentures

With high costs and expensive dentist visits required, getting dentures isn’t a cheap process. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to cut your expenses and lower the price of your dentures. Here are a few ideas to try if you’re considering dentures.

Check With Your Dental Insurance Provider

While Medicare doesn’t cover any part of the cost of dentures, you don’t have to pay the entire cost of your dentures alone. If you have dental insurance, you may be able to offset some of the expense with your insurance policy’s help.

Depending on the specifics of your dental insurance policy, your plan may cover a significant portion of the cost of dentures. You may only need to pay a copay, and you may be able to reduce the overall cost out-of-pocket. You may be required to get a certain kind of dentures, or dentures made from a particular material, so make sure to check with your insurance company before making your final choice.

Join a Dental Discount Plan

In addition to dental insurance, dental discount plans are a great way to increase your savings on any kind of dental work. And joining a dental discount plan can save you money on dentures of any kind.

Dental discount plans are membership plans with an annual fee. Once you’ve become a member, you’ll be able to use your dental discount plan to save money at your dentist’s office. That membership could save you up to 60 percent off the cost of dental services, and all you need to do is show your membership card to reap the benefits.

Apply for Government Assistance Programs

If you’re struggling to pay for the dentures you need, there are a few government and community assistance programs available, particularly for low-income seniors. These programs provide discounted or free dental care for those in need, and if you qualify, you might be able to get your dentures for free or at a low cost.

The Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) is a government program that falls under Medicaid. This program offers low-cost dentures for seniors – and if you’re in a senior who’s under the care of a nursing home, you can receive the dental services you need right where you live. To determine if you qualify, you’ll want to check with Virginia’s Medicaid program.

The National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics (NAFCC) is another option for affordable dentures. This organization offers affordable health and dental care to people who are medically underserved, with over 1,200 clinics nationwide. If you don’t have dental insurance and need dentures, you can visit a NAFCC clinic.

Get Dentures from a Dental School

Another great way to get the dentures you need is to visit a dental school in your area. Dental schools are home to students who are studying dental practices in hands-on ways, and in order to practice their skills, they often need volunteer patients for cleanings, surgical procedures, and other dental work. In order to get those patients, dental schools typically offer services at a significant discount.

Check with local dental schools to see if you can get fitted for and purchase your dentures through the college or university. If it’s possible, you could save money and you might not even need insurance.

Visit a Reduced-Cost Clinic

Did you know that some dental clinics offer all of their services at low or no cost for all patients? There are plenty of reduced-cost clinics – or even free clinics – across the country, and they’re specifically set up offer discounted rates on all kinds of dental work.

Search for reduced-cost clinics in your area online. You can visit Healthcard.gov, FreeClinics.com, and the U.S Department of Health and Human Services to find clinics offering affordable or free dental services in your city. Make sure to ask these clinics specifically about their denture options before visiting.

With so many different ways to find affordable dentures, you don’t have to settle for paying full price. Dentures don’t have to break your bank account, and they certainly don’t have to cost you tens of thousands of dollars. You can use these tips and ideas to find ways to cut the cost of the dentures you need without sacrificing your oral care.