You probably wouldn’t be surprised if you were told that most people don’t take advantage of their dental insurance. While they might continue with their regular dental checkups and cleanings, they don’t bother seeing a dentist in Long Island City for toothaches, dental emergencies, or any other dental problem. There are usually one of two reasons for this: money and avoidance. People see dollar signs when learning they need treatment or a procedure, keeping them from moving forward, or they hope their problem will go away on its own. If either of these scenarios sounds like you, it’s time you learn why it’s best to maximize your insurance benefits before the year is over.
Premiums: You’re Paying for It, So Use It
When you sign up for dental insurance, you agree to pay a monthly premium. This designated amount gives you access to your benefits when you need to use them. Just like a gym membership or a streaming service, you don’t want the hard-earned money you bring in to go to waste, right? The same can be said for dental insurance. Although often viewed as an “unnecessary” expense, it is one of the most beneficial tools you can have, especially when problems arise.
By making the choice to purchase dental insurance, you agree it is a valuable investment. So, use it!
Annual Maximums: When Treatments Add Up
You’ve already had your two six-month dental appointments, a filling, and now you’re being told you need a root canal. If money is the first thing that comes to mind, it’s no surprise, but before you run and hide to avoid the idea of what your bill could look like, think about how your annual maximum can work for you.
This specific amount is what your dental insurance company has agreed to pay in one calendar year. While the average is typically around $1,000, this can vary depending on your individual insurance plan. Should your combined treatments or procedures go over that amount, you are responsible for paying the rest. While this might sound scary, you should know that whether you use your benefits or not, they will not roll over with the new year, so it’s best to use them now while your insurance company is paying more of the cost. It might also be possible for your dental team to spread out your treatment across calendar years, so you don’t go over your maximum and that means, more money in your pocket.
Deductibles: The Goal to Reach Each Year
Each plan has a deductible you must meet before your insurance agrees to pay more for services. With every crown, filling, or dental sealant, the cost is put toward your deductible. Once met, you can now expect your insurance company to begin paying more of their share of your treatments. This is the goal you should aspire to meet each and every year. Just like your premiums, you’re paying for it, so it’s best to use these benefits.
Don’t mistake maximizing your dental benefits as an excuse to forgo your oral hygiene routine. It’s always best to keep your oral health at its best, but should problems arise, don’t put them off. Put the money you’re already spending to good use and take the necessary steps to care for your teeth and gums.
About the Author
Dr. Ishwinder Saran earned his Doctor of Dental Medicine from Boston University Goldman School of Dental Medicine and trained for a year in general dentistry at the Stratton VA Medical Center in Albany, New York. At LIC Dental, Dr. Saran and his team offer a wide range of comprehensive services to meet the needs of all their patients. When it comes to understanding dental insurance and paying for various services, it’s important to get the most out of your benefits before the year is over. If you need help navigating your insurance policy, don’t be afraid to talk to one of their office team members. Contact us via our website or by calling (718) 530-6539 to find out more.