I got to roadtrip Sunday down to my folks’ home in Iowa. The weather was mild for the first day of the second month, the sun shining and it was good to have the time to myself to drive, mull things over and tell myself stories. (And sing very loudly – and perhaps badly – to whatever I had playing in my CD player at the time.)
The purpose behind my visit home was to go to a bridal fair with my mom and to tack down some final details on the wedding. Yes, its three months away, but every day that passes reminds me I have a ton of invitations to address and there’s a lot of stuff that needs to be done. (Then again, I’m also beginning to realize that if something doesn’t get done – it’s not going to be the end of the world. I am the anti-bride.)
But the delight in going to my folks’ house was to hang out with my parents and to see two of my four nephews. (The other two were away for the weekend.)
While I was home, I quizzed my dad on his recent root canal. He got one earlier in January and it was right around the time I had gotten the bill for my uninsured folly. I was charged about $1,100 for my root canal and some other stuff that was uninsured by my company – the root canal itself cost about $850.
“So dad,” I asked. “How much did your root canal cost?”
“Well, it was going to be $360, but she charged me $320 because I had to have two of them. So $640 for both.”
I am no expert on dentists, but if memory serves, my father goes to the same dentist who I visited when I was a kid and needed a retainer. And since my teeth are in relatively good shape, I can attest that the dentist in my hometown is decent.
So why the hell am I paying $850 for a root canal?
I discussed the conundrum with my Future Husband when I got home. Would it be worth saving about $500 to go to my hometown to get any major dentistry done? At first glance – absolutely. It would be worth $500 to drive 1 ½ hours and take a morning or afternoon off work to go to my parents’ hometown and get major dental surgery.
It takes a ½ tank of gas to get back and forth between my folks’ house and Rochester. That’s about $8. For the work that I would miss – that’s about $70. And I would also get to see my family and I don’t mind driving. So I don’t think the $80 I would blow on my trip for cheaper dental is money spent in vain.
The cons? Well, I do love my dentist in town here, even if my dental bills are probably putting her children through school. Having rapport with a local dental professional is probably good in the long run. I also am a big girl and probably shouldn’t run home to mommy and daddy (well – to mommy and daddy’s dentist) every time I have some minor oral surgery that needs to be performed on my gaping maw.
But I would be lying if I didn’t say that this whole idea is very tempting. Anyone else have any thoughts on if this is crazy talk or if I’m actually on to something?
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