Dental insurance coverage is likely the best way to reduce the expense of seeing a dentist. Many see this as an unnecessary expense, but it can save you a lot in the long run.
In this article, we will talk a little about private health care and other ways to save on dental work.
How Does Private Health Care Work?
Insurance coverage for dental care is usually included in private health insurance policies. The details on what is or is not covered are usually explained in detail in the small print of the policy document.
However, there are things to keep in mind with dental insurance.
Things To Look Out For
You may have to wait anywhere between six and twelve months before you can actually use your dental insurance coverage. Major dental work may have a waiting period of up to two years. These timeframes are in place to protect the insurance companies from abuse.
Sometimes insurance companies have specials that reduce or remove the waiting periods. However, it is always important to be sure if all procedures are covered.
Some policies will only refund a certain amount, leaving you to pay the rest. Quite often policies will cover the full amount of basic checkups, but won’t pay for procedures that involve more work. Every policy is different, so make sure that you find out how much is included for each visit or per year.
What Is Not Covered
Cosmetic procedures such as teeth whitening, shaping, gum contouring, and veneers may not be covered. The insurance companies view these procedures as just cosmetic applications as opposed to a medically necessary requirement to improve your dental health.
There is an annual cap on what insurance policies will pay out for your dental procedures. Once that maximum is reached, you are responsible to pay anything beyond it. The maximum does fluctuate in relation to monthly premiums. Generally speaking, the higher the premium, the higher the maximum.
Other Ways To Save On Dental Care
Another way to save on the cost of dental care is through triage. In other words, have your dentist choose what requires treatment in an order of priority. This way you can have work done when you can afford it and still have your dental care needs to be taken care of.
You will need to explain to your dentist that you have a tight budget and plan to have procedures done, but only when you can pay for them. Your dentist will understand thoroughly discuss all options with you. They will be willing to work within your budget to keep your oral health at its best.
Can Some Work Be Delayed?
Your dentist will be flexible when working with you and your budget. One way to make this work is to understand why certain procedures are needed and which ones can be put off until another visit. Your dentist will help you decide the scheduling of work required.
For example, x-rays may not really be required until your next visit. Some procedures may be completed with more affordable materials which will save you a few dollars.
What Else Can You Do Save?
Because dental care can be expensive for some people, there are several ways you can be proactive in your personal oral habits. They are simple things you can do at home that will ultimately reduce your dental care costs. They all relate to keeping your teeth strong and healthy.
1. Brush Regularly
While this seems obvious, how often do you brush your teeth? You should do it at least twice a day with a toothpaste that contains fluoride. Plus, you should floss at least once a day and use a mouthwash that fights plaque and tartar build up. Read the labels to be sure.
Another important part of dental care at home is watching your diet. Be sure to eat plenty of vegetables, fruit and reduce the amount of sugar you consume. Make sure you have enough calcium in your diet. Also simply washing your mouth with fresh water after eating and drinking can reduce acidity and can help.
2. Visit Your Dentist
Your dentist is your best partner in keeping good care of your teeth and oral hygiene. This means you should be scheduling regular appointments for cleanings and exams. Your dentist will be able to identify anything requiring treatment long before you notice a problem. Identifying these problems early can save on more expensive dental procedures later on.
3. Insure Yourself
It is a good idea to explore your options in dental insurance. With most preventative procedures fully covered, you will save a great deal just with your monthly insurance premiums. Deductibles on other procedures will still make them cheaper than if you had to pay the full cost.
Dental Care Does Not Have To Break The Bank
There are ways in which you can save on dental care if you plan ahead and take the initiative to place more attention on the health of your teeth. Keeping your teeth strong and healthy will have an impact on your physical and mental well-being. But you must take action yourself.
Your first step to proper dental health is a visit to a dentist. Even if you have not seen one for years, a dentist will be able to guide you through the steps to better oral health. Dental insurance and home care are up to you and can make your future dentist visits far less painful and expensive.
If you need more tips on how you can save on dental care, make sure to discuss your circumstances with your dentist during your next checkup.