I need major dental work now. Can dental insurance help?
What can you do when you need dental work immediately?
Ouch! You just bit something too hard and injured your tooth. You’re in pain and make a trip to the dentist. Now comes the sticker shock. They say you need a root canal and a crown or dental implant. Thousands of dollars that you don’t have right now. Does this sound like a familiar scenario?
Unfortunately this is a common situation for many people. They’ve been healthy with no dental issues and thus have no dental insurance. Now they need expensive treatments and are looking for options for coverage.
Well there’s good news and bad news. The bad news is that dental insurance will not cover the full costs for major dental treatments similar to how health insurance works. However the good news is that there are dental insurance plans that can provide coverage to help offset your costs for major dental work and provide overall savings in several ways. Let’s take a look.
To wait or not to wait….Dental Insurance Waiting Periods
As you’re looking for dental insurance you may find that there are many plans that have waiting periods for major services. Don’t be discouraged as we have some solutions listed below. But many plans with top carriers can include waiting periods up to 12 months for coverage for major work. Most times these waiting periods are designed to help a member build equity into their plan before the plan pays out a large amount of money. But what if you can’t wait for treatment?
Fortunately there are also great options for dental insurance plans that have no waiting periods for major services from day one. These include plans offered at EasyDentalQuotes with Renaissance Dental and also the Delta Dental Immediate Coverage plan. Many times these plans are structured to grow in coverage over time to reward members that keep coverage in force for multiple years. But most importantly these plans can provide coverage up to 20% in the first year for major services as well as higher percentages for other treatments. And this coverage is coupled with maximum benefits up to $3000 a year. This can really help when you’re needing major dental treatments immediately.
In Network provider savings are a big deal
An often overlooked benefit of many PPO dental plans is the savings that comes from seeing In Network dentists. Think of this as an off the top savings. When dentists join provider networks they sign a contract to agree to only charge the lower negotiated rates that the insurance carrier has set. Many times these lower rates can be 30-50% less than average retails rates for services.
Here’s an actual example from one carrier for a common procedure code. The normal retail rate in a specific area for a crown is $1350 but the negotiated In Network rate for the same procedure is $648. That’s a 48% savings just by having this PPO dental plan and seeing an In Network dentist. So the In Network dentist in this area can only charge the $648 because you have the plan. Plus the dental plan will pay benefits for the appropriate percentage of the services you have to lower your out of pocket costs further. Not a bad deal at all.
Getting dental treatments over time can give you more
Depending on your situation it can often be a good idea to space your dental work out over a period a time. While this doesn’t work for emergency situations, if your needs are not immediate you can get better coverage if you have the work done in segments. As mentioned earlier, many individual dental plans have benefits that grow to higher levels for the first several years. So the longer you have the plan in force, typically the more the plan will cover.
Plus most plans are setup with annual benefit maximums that reset each year on January 1st. So you get a new annual maximum benefit that can be paid out for necessary services each year. If you need a lot of dental work and can be patient to have it completely over a period of time, it can cost you less in the long run.
Bottom Line…You can come out ahead with Dental Insurance
So if you’re in this situation and need major dental treatments such as extractions, root canals, crowns, bridges, or dental implants, you’ll most likely be better off getting some dental insurance to help cover your costs. By selecting an immediate coverage plan with no waiting periods and trying to see an In Network dentist, you will be able to save hundreds or even thousands of dollars. At EasyDentalQuotes, we offer a variety of PPO dental plans with no waiting periods and are available to assist members to find the right coverage to suit their needs. Plus you’ll be able to use the regular benefits of a dental plan such as bi-annual check up’s that will help you maintain your oral health and prevent future dental issues.
Hopefully your teeth are in good shape and will stay that way. But if you find yourself in an unexpected situation and need dental work, you may want to explore the benefits a dental plan could have for you.
Try our “Easy One Step” dental quotes.