Dental Insurance 101 – Understand the Basics

Posted in Dental Insurance

Most people are familiar with the in’s and out’s of medical insurance. We know we need it, and what we use it for. But what about dental insurance, does everyone have it? Should you? With the rising costs of dental work, the right coverage can offer peace of mind. If you’re thinking about your options and wondering if dental coverage is the right choice, here’s some information that can help.

Basic Colorado Dental Coverage

Dental insurance covers a wide range of dental work, from routine cleanings and exams to more complicated procedures, like root canals. Basically, the typical dental insurance plan is one of three types: employer provided, self-purchased or in the form of a rider attached to your medical insurance.

While there are many different plans available with different coverage amounts, the average policy includes basic dental work and preventative procedures. Most plans have a deductible that must be paid before insurance pays, and some have a co-pay that must be paid with each visit.

Standard coverage usually includes:

  • Routine cleanings
  • Check-ups (twice a year)
  • Most of the costs associated with crowns, root canals and cavities 

What Is Typically Not Covered in Colorado

In general, cosmetic procedures are not typically covered under dental insurance. Examples of cosmetic procedures include teeth whitening programs and dental implants. In most cases, tooth colored fillings for cavities are not covered, while silver fillings are. Braces are usually not covered. However, private and individual family plans sometimes offer supplemental coverage for orthodontic care.

Note: Original Medicare does not include coverage for dental work unless it is medically necessary. Many Medicare Advantage plans do offer dental coverage.

Should You Buy?

Deciding whether or not to purchase dental insurance is a personal decision, but one that should be made after careful consideration. Do you or your family members have a history of problems? If you have children who need regular visits to the dentist, insurance can offer important peace of mind. Many plans today are customizable, making it easy to buy only what you need, while keeping costs low. Keep in mind that many plans have a waiting period, meaning after you buy, you could end up having to wait up to two months before coverage kicks in.

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