Dental insurance and dental insurance plans are not necessarily hot topics for after-dinner conversation, but they are important. And knowing what type of plan to pick or even how to pick a dental insurance plan can make the whole subject something to avoid.
But dental insurance is not only a good idea but can be an essential resource for those with more extensive dental needs.
All of which is why having professional tips from expert sources can be such a huge benefit.
One of the biggest mistakes most people make when choosing a dental insurance provider is making cheap dental insurance a priority.
While affordable dental insurance is both reasonable and desirable, “cheap” dental insurance can often be far less of a savings overall than people are hoping for. There is a bit of truth in the old maxim, “You get what you pay for.”
Ideally, you want to choose a dental insurance plan that is both high quality and comprehensive.
For example, it is important for many people to have dental insurance that covers implants since dental implants are costly regardless of where you live. In addition, you may want to ensure that your coverage includes services such as oral surgery and even dental braces
As many people today are aware, orthodontia is no longer just the realm of pre-teens and teenagers, and braces often carry a hefty price tag.
When it comes to shopping for dental insurance, California residents have several options, just as dental insurance plans in Arizona are equally numerous. And depending on the provider, there can be several options available even with individual dental insurance companies.
All of which begs the question, “How do you pick a dental insurance provider?”
Some Pro Tips for Choosing a Dental Insurance Provider
Dental coverage is similar in many ways to health insurance, but they are not quite the same, either.
For example, health insurance usually pays a substantial percentage of your medical expenses once your deductible is paid. And even these often have an annual out-of-pocket maximum, and not so much with dental coverage.
Dental insurance usually follows what is known as a 100-80-50 coverage structure. As Investopedia explains it,
“If you are using in-network dentists, dental plans generally pay 100% of preventive care—exams, X-rays, and cleanings. However, basic procedures, such as fillings, root canals, and extractions, only pay 80%, while major procedures such as crowns, bridges, implants, and gum-disease treatment may only be 50% of the cost. Orthodontia and cosmetic dentistry, which are not deemed medically necessary treatments, are usually not covered at all.”
One initial tip is to confirm whether or not you can get group coverage through your employer or some other group coverage programs. These could be the Affordable Care Act marketplace health insurance policies, AARP for seniors, or even public programs such as Medicaid.
If, however, you must find and choose a dental insurance plan and provider on your own, take time to review and understand what the policy covers. In particular, look for extended waiting periods for services such as crowns, dental implants, or dentures.
It’s important to understand that when you buy your dental insurance, you’ll likely have a waiting period of six months or a year before you’ll have coverage for anything other than basic services. This means that you won’t be able to buy a self-purchased dental plan that will cover the crown or dental implant you were hoping to get next month.
Another key tip to choosing a plan is to estimate what your out-of-pocket costs will be in contrast with what the plan actually covers. A low monthly premium rate may mean that some services are not included in the plan. For example, if the plan doesn’t include dental implants, your total cost may actually be more after adding your premium and out-of-pocket costs.
A third tip is to consider plans that have a large dental network. Typically, the larger the network, the better because there’s a better chance your dentist is in-network, assuming you already have one. And if you prefer to keep your dentist, confirm with the dentist’s office that they take the plan you’re considering before you purchase coverage.
J.C. Lewis Insurance has been a family-owned firm since 1979, and our team of expert brokers offers individual and family dental insurance plans.
In addition, we provide small business and individual health insurance plans from only the leading health insurance carriers that are licensed to do business in the state.
In addition to being experienced, professional brokers, we are licensed and certified by each of these insurance carriers to offer coverage to individuals, families, and small group employers in addition to Medicare supplemental and prescription drug plans for seniors.
When you’re shopping for dental, vision, or health insurance for your employees or for you and your family, you probably have several questions and concerns.
At J.C. Lewis Insurance Services, we welcome your questions about insurance coverage, and you can be confident that we will help you find the right solution.