Dental Insurance guide- Choose the best Dental Insurance


 Dental Insurance guide- Choose the best Dental Insurance

What type of insurance policy does your employer offer?

If you have a dental plan through your employer, it may only cover procedures that dentists deem medically necessary. But if you buy a stand-alone dental plan, you'll have more options for coverage. For example, an in-network orthodontist is not considered medically necessary by most health plans but would be covered by an individual dental policy. Some stand-alone plans also cover dental cleanings. Dental insurance can save you money if you know how to research the plans and make the most of a dental plan.

How does dental insurance work?

Dental insurance is generally sold as an individual or family plan, which means you pay for it yourself and are responsible for filing claims for reimbursement. If you're lucky enough to have coverage through your employer, you don't need to worry about this part -- just go to the dentist. The company will send an employee-deductible invoice at the end of the year with a prorated amount depending on your coverage level and length of service in that year. Then you simply pay the amount owed and get reimbursed by the company for any expenses that exceed that amount.

What does dental insurance cost?

The most basic plans start at about $50 per month for individuals or $95 per month for family members. The more comprehensive individual plans cost $200 to $300 per month, and family plans range from about $400 to over $1,000 a month. The more services covered, the higher the monthly premiums are likely to be. While it may seem expensive to you now, doing some comparison shopping will help you find affordable dental insurance coverage.

How does dental insurance work?

Once you select a plan, you'll be asked when and where you'll need dental coverage in the coming year. You'll also be given the option of paying a premium to cover those costs. The coverage is generally effective for one year. However, if you plan to have major dental work done in that time frame, such as braces for kids or teeth pulled for adults, your dentist will probably recommend purchasing additional coverage before starting care. Coverage can be extended from up to two years but not more than five years.

What does dental insurance pay for?

Dental insurance covers your routine dental needs, such as periodic checkups, cleanings and fillings. However, check with your provider to be sure the services you want are covered under all terms of the plan. Also, you'll need to pay a small copayment each time you see the dentist. You can usually choose from several in-network dentists in your area where coverage is effective.

Do dental plans have exclusions?

Most policies don't cover any cosmetic procedures such as veneers or whitening treatments unless there's a pre-existing condition that severely affects appearance. Other exclusions include fillings on your back teeth and treatment for TMJ. Also, dental plans won't cover any services that are considered elective or aren't truly necessary.

Do I have to pay the full deductible amount each year?

Usually, but some plans will waive the deductible if you go to the dentist in the first 30 days of coverage. It's best to check with your provider before scheduling a procedure. You can also purchase a "gap" plan with a separate company to help fill in any gaps between what your insurance doesn't cover and what you can afford out-of-pocket.

Does a dental plan cover my entire family?

Usually, yes. Check with your provider to determine the cost of coverage and any additional family members who may need coverage. When taking advantage of discounted plans, make sure you provide the following information: each member's name; birth date; and Social Security Number or passport number to help expedite the enrollment process.

How do I get free dental insurance quotes?

Fill out an application at websites like or, which will then send you a free quote from some top companies in your area based on your information provided in the application form. You'll then either follow-up on the quote or submit a claim to one of the companies.

What questions should I ask about my dental plan?

Find out what the out-of-pocket maximum is that you should be aware of. This amount exceeds your deductible and is your maximum amount that you will have to pay for any covered treatment or service during the plan year. If you go over this amount, you'll have to pay the difference as well as an additional 10 percent of your coinsurance level, which is just a fancy word for co-payment. Check with your provider if this amount may surprise you; it often can be less than you expected.

Can I speak with a dentist or insurance agent in person?

Many dental insurance companies allow you to call a local office to speak with agents during coverage period or before an upcoming claim. This allows you to make sure you're getting the best coverage possible and is a great way to go over any questions you may have regarding your plan, deductible amounts, benefits and how to file a claim for reimbursement. Don't hesitate to ask if there are any promotional discounts available for new patients.

What will my checkup be like?

It's important that you find out what services your dentist offers so that you can better coordinate your visits at affordable rates. You'll need to see your dentist for routine checkups, x-rays and any necessary oral surgery. Depending on your coverage, you may have the option of seeing an hygienist who cleans your teeth and flosses them at one visit during every six months or less frequently as needed.

Are there different limits for different services?

Dental plans often cater to specific groups such as children under age 18, adults over age 50, people with disabilities and others. You need to check the limits carefully so that you're not surprised by unnecessary expenses. For example, some dental plans cover braces for children but not adults. Also, preventive services are often provided at no cost while others, like crowns and bridges, carry higher premiums.

Do dental plans have any limitations?

As with any insurance policy, there are certain limitations that you need to check carefully. Find out if the deductible is cumulative from year to year or if your annual limits will go up each year. You may also want to ensure that you understand the guidelines for filing a claim and what proof of payment you'll need prior to receiving reimbursement from your provider.


If you are looking for dental insurance, the best way to find affordable rates is to shop around online before committing. There are several websites that allow you to input specific information regarding your current dentist, services that you need and other factors to determine which policies will give you the best coverage at an affordable rate. Take advantage of free quotes from multiple companies in your area and be sure to read through any fine print to ensure that you're getting what you expect.

Don't forget though, dental insurance doesn't cover everything, so keep an eye on your budget and prepare for higher-cost procedures by choosing a plan with a higher deductible or paying out of pocket until it's time to file a claim.

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