What is Dental Insurance?


What is Dental Insurance

Dental Insurance is an often misunderstood subject. In simple terms a dental insurance plan is a combination of cost sharing for routine services and true insurance for unexpected higher cost treatments like root canals or crowns. Let’s dig a little deeper and find out what dental insurance is and how it works.

Dental Insurance Basics

The first place to get started with dental insurance is to find the right plan for you. Once you’ve signed up for a plan, members are required to pay a monthly payment also known as premium, in order to get access to plan benefits. Once a member is "active" on their plan they can schedule an appointment with a dentist for a general exam. Typically a routine exam will consist of an evaluation with x-rays, cleaning, and diagnosis of any issues that require further treatment. Many dental plans can cover a major portion of routine services. Additional treatments such as fillings, sealants, root canals, or crowns can be covered depending on the specifics of the insurance plan. So one of the main benefits of dental insurance is plan cost sharing for the basic dental treatments you need.

The Advantage of Provider Networks

In addition to cost sharing, PPO dental plans also have the benefit of cost savings for In-Network providers. Dentists and other specialty dental providers who join a plan’s network agree to accept the plans pricing for covered procedures. The In-Network prices are typically lower than the dentist's retail prices they would normally charge. Providers agree to these lower charges in order to be able to see the members of the plan, which can typically be a large number of potential patients. This plan savings is passed on to members as a benefit of having a PPO dental insurance plan. Often an overlooked advantage of a dental plan, In-Network provider savings can be a huge value for members.

Dental Insurance is Protection for Unexpected Costly Procedures

One of the main purposes of dental insurance is to help provide protection from unexpected events that cause the need for costly dental services. People can commonly get a cracked tooth from chewing hard foods or candy. Or members can have trauma to their mouth or jaw due to an accident or injury. Regardless of the reason, dental insurance can help offset the costs of expensive dental work due to unplanned events.

All in all, dental insurance provides a multitude of benefits. Most dental plans provide cost sharing of benefits and higher annual benefit maximums for those unexpected treatments. From routine exams to In Network provider savings, there are a number of positive reasons why dental insurance can be a good value for you.

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