Your oral health is integral to your overall health and well-being, which is why regular dental care is highly recommended. Unfortunately, dental care is often neglected by many, especially because it can be costly. Merely preventive care can put a major dent on the budget. Therefore, it is ideal to opt for dental insurance. There are numerous affordable dental plans available that cover different services.
The right dental coverage can drastically help you to manage your finances while caring for your oral health. Selecting the right dental plan is not an easy task. There are various things you must consider before deciding which dental plan is suitable for you and your family.
Understanding Dental Plans
Dental coverage works the same way as typical medical insurance. It is also a voluntary benefit option that is provided to many employees through their organization. Depending on the policy, dental insurance can cover some or almost all the dental services.
Similar to medical insurance, dental coverage is categorized into different plans, including:
- Dental Health Maintenance Organization (DHMO) – this plan is applicable when you consult the network of dentists with the insurance plan
- Dental Preferred Provider Organization (DPPO) – this plan is applicable for both the network of dentists and other dentists, but the payment is less when you opt for one of the dentists in the network
- Dental Indemnity Plan – this is applicable no matter which dentist you go to, without any difference in prices
- Discount Dental Plan – this plan offers reduced dental costs without the insurance coverage as your dental care is based on a previously agreed upon rate
It is essential to go through the policy thoroughly and compare dental plans in order to make your final decision.
7 Things You Should Know About Dental Plans
Before selecting a dental plan, it is essential to know the following things to help you select the right plan and avoid unexpected expenses:
- Group Coverage
The majority of individuals avail dental coverage as a benefit through their organizations or opt for dental plans through group coverage, such as the Affordable Care Act marketplace policies, AARP, or through programs like TriCare, Children’s Health Insurance Program, and Medicaid.
If you are looking for affordable dental plans, then looking at group coverage plans is a good idea. These plans are less expensive than buying individual dental plans. Make sure that you look at all the details of the plans that are employer-sponsored in order to determine if the premium is worth it or not.
- Individual Policies
Individual dental plans are costlier than group plans, and often have restricted benefits. Another thing about these plans is that they typically come with a waiting period for most of the major services. This means if you want to sign up for a dental plan just because you need a set of dentures or need a major dental process done, the insurers are way ahead of you. They are aware of these tactics, which is why there is typically a waiting period of a year before you would be allowed to use specific benefits.
- Coverage of Major Restorative Services
Root canals, implants, bridges, and crowns are usually covered for 50% of the price in most of the dental plans. It might seem like you are paying too much money, but keep in mind that these major services are not needed too often.
Even still, these procedures are expensive and paying half the price is still worth it. You must make sure that the major restorative services are indeed covered in your dental plan.
- Corrective Services Might Not Be Included
Often people avail dental plans without thoroughly checking which services they would be able to avail till it is too late. There are many plans that don’t cover various corrective services. If you require braces or other services, you must opt for a plan that covers this service.
The policy of your dental plan may limit your options. Most of the plans only cover basic services, which includes but is not limited to checkups, routine cleanings, and specific restoration services. It is important that you check beforehand the services you can avail instead of realizing at the last moment that you would have to pay for an expensive procedure from your own pocket.
- Waiting Periods
Affordable dental plans help in saving your money, but it is best to not save the entire dental work for the initial month of your purchased plan. Usually some of the services, like preventive care can be immediately covered or within 30 days of purchasing the plan, while basic restorative procedures might be covered three months after the purchase of the plan, and major restorative procedures six months after.
Therefore, as mentioned above, you must be aware of these waiting periods. Some policies cover merely a few procedures every year, while for some plans, you can start using all the services after a year of purchase. Select the dental plan wisely.
- Health Care Reform Has Affected Dental Coverage
According to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), dental care is a significant health benefit for children aged 19 and under, although the age limit may vary in different states. This health care reform has labeled dental care as an important health benefit, which means medical health plans have to provide dental benefits for children, unless an individual dental plan has been availed. This is important to understand if you have children.
- Your Dentist Can Help
Your dentist can help you choose a dental plan that is right for you, as per your needs and situation. Therefore, don’t hesitate to discuss dental plans with your dentist. The dentist or the clinic staff can help you in understanding the policies, or may have their own financing solutions for you.
These factors are essential to consider when you are looking for the right dental plan for yourself and for your family. If you are searching for the best dental plans, check out Dental Plan Provider.
You can compare dental plans and even receive an additional 10% off when you join online. We can help you keep your oral health in check without breaking your bank.