The most genius idea hit me the other day. My older girls had their bi-annual dental appointment last month, and I had a conversation with my oldest daughter’s school secretary about why we feel it’s important to pay for dental insurance. She didn’t get it, didn’t understand why we take our four small kids, and thinks it’s not all that necessary. I disagree. Good oral health is not an option in my household. However, she made a valid point when she said that she’d rather be able to pay for her health insurance without stressing she can’t find the money than add additional insurance to her policy.
I never looked at it from that point of view. Some people simply cannot afford to pay for dental insurance. What’s scary about that is the fact that these same people very likely cannot afford to pay for dental emergencies that could occur in their lives. Since your oral health is directly related to your overall health, it’s a scary thought to think that someone might not be able to adequately care for their mouth without insurance.
I began thinking; how do people who cannot afford to pay for dental insurance in the budget right now find a way to make it possible? I thought about the obvious concepts; selling things, getting a second job, etc. That’s when I thought that perhaps they could get rid of another expense and re-focus those funds to dental insurance. Call me a genius, if you will. Here are a few ways you can go frugal – that aren’t the typical ideas – so that you can take your savings and buy dental insurance (or whatever else it is you need to purchase).
Stock Up on Groceries
We love fresh fruits and veggies in our house. It’s insane to me how ridiculous they are priced at times. Just last month we were going through some sort of blueberry shortage and I could not find blueberries anywhere for about two weeks. Since that’s my favorite, and my 2-year-old twins’ favorite, it was devastating. When we finally found them in the store again, it was $6.99 for a package with approximately 40 blueberries in it. Let’s face it; that’s not even enough for two kids at breakfast and to add to my yogurt and granola. Two weeks later, it was on sale in huge packages with more like 150 blueberries for the low price of $3.
I thought about buying them all, but what do I do with them before they go bad? It’s a good idea to stock up on these items and freeze them. Buy your favorites when they are on sale, stock up big time and freeze everything. This means you can go months without buying these items and save significantly.
Shop At Thrift Stores
Do you have thrift stores in your area that contain nice items? If you do, you should head in there and buy designer goods for low prices even if they’re not your size or style. You can resell these items online for more than you paid for them and save that cash to pay for your dental insurance.
Buy Discount Gift Cards
Did you know you can go online and google “Discount gift cards,” and buy them for a lot less than face value from several reputable sites? I recommend this – even though it sounds like spending more money – because you can buy them for places you go. If you see them for your favorite grocery store, buy them. You can buy a $50 gift card for $45 or a $100 gift card for $85. It’s not a lot of savings at once, but it adds up and you’ll be able to get a discount on your gas or groceries – and save that money for your dental insurance. Let’s say you spend $200 per week at the supermarket and you are able to buy supermarket gift cards twice a week for $85 each for $100 gift cards. That’s $170 for gift cards, $200 in value at the store, and $30 savings. That’s $120 per month you’re saving and can allot to your dental insurance plan.
Give Up Something
Do you have a habit that’s expensive? I know I do. I could give up wine and save $100 per week. I could give up coffee and save $40 per week. I could give up so many things and save, but I’m the mother of our and those things are so necessary to me (judge away, friends). If you happen to have a habit that you can give up, eating fast food, happy hour, the gym (since you can exercise at home or outside) or something else, give it up and take that money for your dental insurance. It’s easy to save money and afford dental insurance if you just take the time to find a creative way to do just that.
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