Should I Add Dental Insurance to my Health Policy?

Adding dental insurance to your health policy can save you a lot of money while protecting one of your most important assets. The health of your teeth and gums can have a significant effect on your physical well being. If your teeth are cleaned, examined and treated regularly by a dentist, you can avoid expensive and painful procedures and enjoy better overall health. Having clean, strong, healthy teeth can also boost your self confidence and increase your satisfaction with your appearance.

Benefits of Dental Insurance

Including dental insurance as a supplement to a health insurance policy doesn’t have to be expensive. You can add a basic dental plan to your health insurance for a low monthly premium. Most basic dental plans include cleaning, X rays and annual examinations. You may also have coverage for fillings, extractions and other medically necessary procedures. The most affordable policies include routine preventive care, which will help you avoid more expensive, invasive interventions.

If you have a family, adding dental insurance to your health policy will ensure that your children maintain strong, healthy teeth as they grow. Regular cleanings and examinations are important for growing kids. If your children have frequent cavities, experience gum problems or need to have orthodontic work performed, a dentist can identify these issues and make recommendations or referrals for further treatment or evaluation. If one of your children has a cavity, getting it filled promptly will help prevent future complications.

Most dental insurance policies do not cover cosmetic dentistry, or procedures that are done strictly to improve your appearance. Tooth whitening or straightening, for example, may not be covered under your policy. Most plans cover only routine care or interventions that are necessary for maintaining your health and preventing injury or disease.

Even routine dental care can be extremely expensive if you’re paying for these costs out of pocket. Avoiding your yearly exams may eventually lead to tooth decay and cavities. To avoid extractions, root canals and other costly procedures, invest in a supplemental insurance plan that protects you and your family against the high costs of dental care.

Choosing a Dental Plan

When you’re choosing a health insurance policy, you may be given several options for your dental treatment. A full coverage dental plan covers routine preventive care and many other treatments and services. Orthodontic treatment is generally not covered under a basic dental plan. A family dental plan may offer special benefits for you, your spouse and children, such as free routine cleanings for kids. Benefits may vary significantly with family dental insurance, so it’s important to compare your options carefully before you buy a plan.

Discount dental plans may be offered with some health insurance policy. A discount plan does not provide the same benefits as dental insurance. These plans simply give you and your family access to discounted rates for certain dentists and dental services in your area. You will still be required to pay for the remaining costs out of pocket after the discount has been applied. Discounts will not be accepted by all dentists, and will usually apply only to specific services, like cleaning or X rays.

Adding dental insurance to your health policy may be a wise choice, especially if you have a family. If the cost of having a broken tooth fixed or a cavity filled would overwhelm your financial resources, you may be better off with dental insurance. Given the importance of dental health to your digestive, respiratory and cardiovascular systems, it pays to get regular cleanings, examinations and X rays from a qualified dentist in your area.