Dental Insurance Plans of various types and levels of cover are available to Americans. This short article will help you understand the different types of dental care available to you. Let’s try to understand each of these types so we can make better decisions when it comes to buying dental cover for us or our families.
Dental Insurance: Well, this is just like health insurance. You pay a premium – monthly or weekly and in return you receive dental benefits which can range anywhere between 80-100 percent of your dental cost. Usually dental insurance is provided by your employer. There are limitations just like in health insurance – waiting periods, pre-existing dental conditions might not be covered and so on. Check with your employer or your insurance agent about the extent and amount of cover.
Dental Reimbursement Plans: Now, this is a plan that both employers and employees will approve of that is if the employers wish to provide some extra benefits for their employees without too many hassles. Under this scheme you go and get treated and then present the bills and your company reimburses you upto some prescribed agreed limit. This is not any dental insurance plan it is just a agreement of sorts between the employees and employer. This is a no hassle plan as you don’t have to pay any monthly premiums and neither does your company have to deal with insurance companies or all the paper work. There is no restriction on the dentists you should visit and so on. But the disadvantage is you can’t get treated for dental problems that cost you more than the limit agreed for a year and if you exceed that you need to pay for it yourself.
Group Plans : If your company does not offer dental insurance or dental benefits than you can get together with other employees and ask your company to set up a voluntary dental insurance group plan. This allows you to bargain with the dental insurance company for group rates which are much lower than if you buy it yourself. Though this type of plans means you and your colleagues pay the premiums and fees for the dental insurance still you save quite a bit. Groups do have more bargaining power. The bigger your group the better for you. You could even bargain for some extra benefits.
Discount Dental Plans: Strictly speaking, dental discount plans aren’t actually dental insurance. A dental discount plan is quite affordable By paying a flat fee once a year, you become member and gain access to all the dentists in the network. It’s structured like a club, and members are able to visit any dentist within the network to receive treatment.
It’s easy to find a dental discount plan under $15 per month that provides routine dental services for less than half the traditionally listed fees – and often much less – for services provided by dentists within the network Discounted fees have been negotiated and established by the company administering the network.
Paperwork for the patient is minimal and the patient receives the same type of service as someone paying full price. With these plans, there are no claim forms to submit, no arguments about pre-existing conditions, no deductibles to meet, no limits on the amount paid or the number of times the plan is used. In fact, patients are encouraged to get routine cleanings and examinations, which often prevents more costly, major procedures.
One of the advantages to a dental discount plan is the savings over listed fees. For some dental procedures, such as bridgework, a root canal, or orthodontics, the savings may be substantial. The main disadvantage is that you must use a dentist within the network, and not all dentists are eager to participate.
However, the national companies have networks of thousands of dental service providers, and all must be certified as licensed dentists for the specific region where they practice before they are able to sign on to provide dentistry for patients in the network. This takes the worry out of finding a qualified provider when away from home – another advantage to the dental discount plan.
National network plans are a real bonus for those who travel around the country frequently. That means wherever in the U.S. they happen to be, there will be a dentist available under the dental discount plan for emergencies, such as a cracked tooth, repair of a filling, or gum infection. This eliminates the fear of having to go blindly shopping for a dentist while in the middle of an emergency, and then wondering if that choice was a reasonable one.
Some people may even travel to an area to have dental work done if they know of a particularly good dentist or for a considerable financial savings. Depending upon location, fees for work performed under a dental discount plan will vary. Some areas of the country generally have more expensive health care costs, and in those regions you should expect to pay more. Participating dental offices will often post their fees, so that there are no financial surprises when receiving treatment. This is another reason why so many people have recently been enrolling in a dental discount plan.