Dental insurance can be confusing at times, especially if you are fairly new to your policy. How can you get the most out of your benefits? Your dental team is ready to assist you. In the meantime, read this simple guide that explains four important points which may help you establish a foundation of knowledge that will equip you to use your policy in the most advantageous way possible.
Network Status Is Not Always Important
There are two popular types of dental insurance plans: HMO and PPO. HMOs place restrictions on where you can use your benefits. PPO plans, however, are different. Even if a particular practice is not in-network with your policy, you can still submit claims and expect to enjoy a significant reduction in out-of-pocket costs. You may pay slightly more than you would at an in-network practice, but if you strongly prefer a particular dentist, going out of network can be well worth it.
Benefits Do Not Roll Over
A typical PPO insurance plan works on a calendar-year basis. At the beginning of the year, you may have $1000 or more worth of benefits that you can take advantage of, plus two preventive appointments (cleanings and exams). At the end of the year, any benefits that you have not used will expire; they will be gone forever!
Each year, as you are getting close to the end of your current policy, it is wise to review what benefits you still have left so you can use what you need to maintain a healthy smile.
Dental Insurance Focuses on Prevention
Dental insurance companies want to encourage their policyholders to prevent oral health problems. That is why they often cover 100% of the cost of cleanings, exams, and other basic preventive services. Minor restorative services may be just 80% covered, while major procedures may be only 50% covered. It is in your best interests, therefore, to be diligent about preventive care rather than waiting for a dental problem before you book an appointment.
Policies Can Vary Widely
There are very few points that hold universally true when it comes to dental insurance. For example, while most plans do not cover teeth whitening, a sparse handful cover it as an extra perk for their customers. Some plans cover orthodontia, while others do not. The same thing is true of dental implants. It is important that you closely examine the details of any policy you are thinking about buying so you know what you are committing to.
Dental insurance can be tricky to navigate. The above information can be a starting point that will help you understand and use your benefits in the best way.
Meet the Practice
Here at Lifetime Dental of Agawam, Dr. Michitti and our team are proud to offer a robust selection of dental services in a welcoming environment. We strive to charge fair prices, and we are in-network with some popular dental insurance plans. To learn how we can help you use your benefits in a way that keeps your out-of-pocket costs to a minimum, contact our office at 413-786-4400.