Health insurance is something people don't think about until they need it. You may be tempted to forgo dental insurance, thinking you have strong teeth, but it never hurts to be prepared. Dental insurance can save you from costly medical bills resulting from a dental emergency in the future. If you've never purchased dental insurance before, you might not know where to begin. Learning as much as possible about this type of insurance can help you make informed purchasing decisions. Here are four things every patient should know about dental insurance coverage.
Your employer may offer dental insurance coverage.
Some people are eligible for dental insurance through their employers. If this is an option for you, it's a great way to save money. When you get health insurance benefits through your job, your employer will often pay for part or all of the monthly cost. Some jobs give employees the option to forgo dental insurance coverage in exchange for bonuses or extra days of vacation. In general, it's better to take the dental insurance, which can save you money in case of an emergency.
Your dentist may not accept certain types of dental insurance.
Dental insurance works similarly to health insurance, in that most insurance plans only cover appointments made with dentists within the insurance network. If you see a dentist who doesn't accept your insurance, you will still have to pay out of pocket. This is something to keep in mind if you have a dentist that you really like; if continuing to see that dentist for your dental care is important to you, make sure you select dental insurance that they accept.
Your insurance plan will cover preventative care.
In general, all dental insurance plans cover preventative care, which means two dental cleanings per year and annual x-rays. Additional treatments may be fully or partially covered depending on the plan you pay for. More expensive plans will pay for a greater percentage of restorative treatments, like fillings and root canals. Since preventative care is usually covered at 100%, you should take advantage of it. Make sure to attend all your scheduled dental checkups to get the most value for your money.
Your insurance benefits reset each year.
Most dental insurance plans reset each calendar year. If the end of the year is approaching and you haven't used your benefits yet, it's worthwhile to use them before they expire. Take care of any outstanding dental work that needs to be done, since your dental benefits do not roll over into the next year.