Having dental insurance benefits is great, but they’re virtually worthless if they aren’t put to use. If you’re behind on visiting your dentist for preventive care or you have unfinished dental work, this is a critical time of year to take action. Why now, though? A local dentist explains why you should have a sense of urgency about taking action and how you can maximize your dental insurance before the year ends!
The Clock is Ticking
For most dental insurance plans, coverage renews at the start of the new year. That means any remaining benefits from 2019 will be lost on January 1st, 2020. Because you’re obligated to pay a deductible before your dental insurance kicks in, which is typically around $50, any unfinished dental work that you let carry over into the new year will require you to pay a new deductible. Thus, failing to get in for a visit is the equivalent of letting money go down the drain.
Are Americans Wasting Their Dental Insurance?
According to recent statistics, over 160 million Americans currently have dental insurance. Unfortunately, of that population, only 2.8% will maximize their coverage by the end of the year. With a typical plan maximum of $1,250 and an average usage of $323 per person, most Americans are leaving nearly $1,000 of dental care on the table.
Thankfully, the year isn’t over yet. There is still time to take action!
How Most Plans are Structured
The most common dental plan structure is 100-80-50. The following explains how the benefits are generally allocated:
- Preventive Care – where dental insurance gets the most mileage, provides 100% coverage for at least one cleaning and examination per year
- Basic Care – for procedures like fillings and root canals, the plan usually provides up to 80% coverage
- Major Care – reserved for more complex forms of care like the placement of a dental crown, with up to 50% of the cost covered
The Other Benefits of Being Proactive
By taking action and visiting a local dentist, you can save more than just money. You can also protect yourself from common issues related to dental negligence, like gum disease, chronic bad breath, tooth loss and other problems. In turn, you can save time and prevent any unnecessary suffering.
So to put your end of year dental insurance to good use, schedule a visit today. Your mouth and wallet will be happy that you did!
About the Author
Dr. Bryan C. Oyler is a graduate of Indiana University’s School of Dentistry. He has gone on to provide 25 years of dental care excellence to the Lawrenceburg community. Dr. Oyler understands that his patients lead busy lives, but he still encourages them to visit on a regular basis so he can help them manage their oral health while getting the most value from their dental insurance. He provides the best in dental care at Oyler Family Dentistry, and he can be reached for more information through his website.