Don’t have dental insurance?
You’re not alone.
In fact, about one in four Americans…Opens in a new window to article citing this statistic… have no dental care coverage at all.
Considering how important oral health is to overall health, that’s a concerning statistic!
The good news is, even if you don’t have the luxury of dental benefits through an employer, there are still plenty of options.
Not having dental insurance should never stop you from getting the basic care you need.
You may have noticed your dental office offers an in-house care plan and wondered – are dental discount plans worth it? And what about other dental insurance options?
Don’t worry. We’ll break all this confusing benefits stuff down so you can make the best decision for you and your family.
How do I get dental benefits?
Check your employee benefits package
If your employer offers dental insurance, it usually makes the most financial sense to accept it.
Employers typically subsidize the monthly premium payments and can negotiate lower rates for dentists in their network.
Your contribution toward the premium as an employee is generally pretty low.
But what if your employer doesn’t offer dental insurance?
In this case, there are typically three options for you:
- Pay for all dental care out of pocket.
- Purchase dental benefits or insurance from a healthcare marketplace.
- Purchase a dental discount plan directly through your dental office.
Let’s explore each option in depth.
1 – Paying for dental care out of pocket
This is usually the least desirable option, especially if you anticipate large dental care needs and expenses.
Sure, you won’t have any monthly premiums to pay, which is nice.
However, you risk being saddled with expenses anytime you need dental care. In some cases, these can be substantial.
By not having any dental benefits, you’re less likely to go to the dentist regularly.
That could mean serious health consequences!
Getting routine dental cleanings and exams every six months is critical to your oral health.
Preventative care ensures your dentist catches any problems early on and treat them, before they become big, expensive emergencies down the road.
In fact, preventative care usually helps save you money in the long run (and prevents a whole lot of pain and headaches!).
The bottom line is – avoiding dental care is a bad idea.
So if you’re going to skip the benefits, at the very least, budget wisely.
Plan dental visits into your budget every six months. Keep extra cash on hand in case you ever face a dental emergency.
2 – Purchase dental benefits or insurance from a healthcare marketplace
We all understand how critical having health insurance coverage is to protect you and your family from high, unexpected health costs.
Health insurance plans also typically cover the costs of routine preventative care and can save you money in the long run.
So health insurance is a no-brainer.
Just like health insurance, you purchase an individual dental plan from a healthcare marketplace, such as Healthcare.gov…Opens in a new window to Healthcare.gov homepage… or eHealth…Opens in a new window to eHealth homepage….
But here’s the catch:
Dental benefits work a little differently than health insurance.
Dental benefits vs. dental insurance – understand the difference
When you’re shopping for a dental plan on a marketplace, you’ll likely notice that the term “dental benefits” is used more often than “dental insurance.”
Why is that?
Even though most people refer to a dental benefits care plan as “insurance,” it’s technically a different type of health plan.
Here’s the key difference:
An insurance plan is designed to reimburse you for a loss. Your insurance provider carries the financial risk if something bad happens.
For example, a car insurance plan will pay you back the cost of your car if you total it in an accident. If you were injured in that accident, a health insurance plan would cover the cost of your hospital visit.
In contrast, a dental benefits plan is only designed to cover certain procedures, and sometimes covers a percentage of others.
Another important distinction:
Medical insurance covers the cost after your bills reach your deductible amount.
However, dental insurance cuts off coverage after your bills reach a certain annual limit. Any additional costs come out of pocket.
So should you be worried about hitting your maximum with dental insurance?
Only 2 to 4 percent of Americans…Opens in a new window to article that cites this statistic… will exhaust their maximum benefits annually. So unless you need an expensive procedure, you may have nothing to worry about.
In fact, the bigger concern may be that a marketplace dental insurance plan may not always make the most financial sense, especially if you aren’t exhausting those benefits.
The key takeaway is to do your research. Compare plans carefully.
Don’t assume that a dental insurance or benefits plan will meet your needs or save you money in the long run.
3 – Purchase a dental discount plan through your dentist
You may have noticed that your dental office offers its own custom dental plan. You may have wondered, “are dental discount plans worth it?”
These plans can be an excellent alternative to marketplace dental insurance or benefit plans!
At Artistic Smiles, we offer affordable, comprehensive in-house dental care plans exclusively for our patients.
Many patients opt for our in-house care plans over general dental insurance or benefits because they find it saves them money – up to 62% on all plans!
Furthermore, by making a plan for their dental care in advance, they know they’ll never miss an appointment.
We offer three plans to meet the needs of all family sizes:
- Single – $399/year
- Couple – $768/year
- Family of four – $1,531/year
For the first year on the plan, each member will get:
- 1 comprehensive exam
- 2 cleanings
- 1 full set of x-rays
- 50% off Zoom Whitening every five years
- 15% off most other treatments
Each member will get:
- 2 periodic exams per year
- 2 regular cleanings
- Set of four bite wing x-rays
Some other great perks of our in-house care plan:
- NO waiting periods for major dental work (most other plans have a one year waiting period)
- NO deductibles
- NO coverage limits
- NO annual maximums (most other plans have a $1,500 yearly maximum)
- State-of-the-art facility & treatment
- Quality care in a comfortable setting
So are dental discount plans worth it?
We say “yes.”
Dental discount plans save you money, even when compared to marketplace plans.
And it’s definitely a better option than forgoing any benefits at all!
If you’re uninsured, don’t let that stop you from getting high-quality dental care for you and your family.
Learn more about our in-house plans, then give us a call to sign up and book your next appointment: 303-485-8888.
Or contact us by one of these other convenient means:
Your smile will thank you for years to come!
We proudly serve Longmont, CO, and surrounding areas, including Niwot, Boulder, Lyons, Firestone, Frederick, Loveland, Fort Collins, Denver, Littleton, Superior, Broomfield, and Erie.