Dental insurance is health insurance for your mouth. Like health insurance, you pay a monthly insurance premium, and the dental insurance policy covers some of the costs associated with your routine dental care. The question many people ask is “does your family need dental insurance?” The best way to determine this is by re-evaluating what benefits you need and which you may not. According to many dentists as well as financial experts, depending on the current condition of your oral health, eliminating dental insurance may be a financially smart move.
What Does Dental Insurance Cover?
Although there is a wide range of dental insurance plans, this type of insurance typically covers two dental visits per year for cleanings, fillings and x-rays. Some dental plans may also cover crowns and root canal therapy and some procedures, such as oral surgery that includes biopsies and extractions. After a waiting period (often a long waiting period), some dental plans may begin to cover the full or partial cost for periodontics, dentures and bridges. Cosmetic procedures are not generally covered unless it is necessary due to a medical condition.
How Much Does Dental Insurance Cost?
For most people, dental insurance plans tend to be affordable. The dental deductibles are typically lower than the deductible for major medical coverage, and they generally pay 50 percent to 100 percent of the costs. So, is the expense of dental insurance worth it for you? The main concern with not having dental insurance is that dental care may be expensive once you have developed serious dental problems, such as periodontal disease or extensive tooth decay. It may be less expensive in the long run to have routine dental care and avoid the risk of serious and more extensive dental problems down the road.
Considering Dental Insurance?
If you are considering dental insurance, the first place to start is with your family dentist. Ask your current dentist about the type of dental plans their office accepts. Keep in mind that some dental plans only offer treatment for specific dental complications, so be sure only to consider plans that provide coverage for the services you are interested in. Not only should you look at the cost of the monthly premium, but you should also consider the other costs as well, such as deductibles, co-pays and extra expenses. Always compare quotes from different providers to narrow down your options and to ensure you are getting the best policy for your needs as well as your budget.
It is important to keep in mind that dental insurance coverage is generally small if you need any dental procedures other than routine cleanings and fillings; dentists are also getting smaller reimbursements from the insurance providers. This means that both the patients and the dental providers are receiving worse coverage, while the costs continue to rise. In most situations, it may be worth exploring cash options with your dentist and not paying for dental coverage at all.
Questions about your dental coverage or need to schedule a cleaning? Contact us at Trailhead Dental today!