The end of the year is approaching quickly, which means your dental insurance benefits will be expiring soon. Since it’s a monthly investment, it only makes sense that you’d want to make the most of it while you still can. By optimally using your coverage, you can maintain a healthy smile and save plenty of money down the line. To help you out, a dentist in Hutchinson shares a few ways you can maximize dental insurance benefits.
Get Regular Preventive Dental Care
Regular preventive dental care is critical for maintaining good oral health. Visiting your dentist every six months for a checkup and cleaning allows them to prevent, detect, and treat dental problems before they become severe complications. With their help, you can avoid needing more extensive and costly procedures down the line. What’s even better? These preventive visits don’t have to break the bank! Since dental services like oral examinations, teeth cleanings, and routine X-rays are essential for a healthy smile, most insurance plans will cover them at little or no cost to you.
Schedule Restorative Treatment Before the Year Ends
It’s worth noting that dental insurance plans do not offer the same amount of coverage for every service. For example, while they often cover preventive care at 100%, restorative treatments like fillings may only be covered at 70-80%. If a cavity worsens to the point where a filling cannot successfully treat it, you’ll need to undergo a more extensive service like a root canal or crown. For both of those services, your insurance may only cover as little as 40-50% of the cost. Therefore, it’s best to schedule restorative treatments as soon as possible for the sake of your oral health and wallet.
Find Out When Your Benefits Expire
Even though every dental insurance plan is different, most tend to operate on a calendar-year basis. At the beginning of the year, you’re given an annual maximum, which is the most your plan will pay for approved treatments throughout the year. Any benefits left unused by December 31st will disappear and won’t roll over into the new year. That said, it’s a good idea to schedule any outstanding dental work before your policy expires.
Schedule Major Procedures in Advance
Major procedures usually take multiple appointments to complete. If you require dental work that exceeds your annual maximum, ask your dental team if you can schedule part of this year and the rest the next. With this strategy, you can use two annual maximums and reduce your out-of-pocket expenses significantly.
Use Your Flexible Spending Account (FSA) Dollars
Some people have a flexible spending account (FSA) in addition to their normal dental insurance policy. This account allows you to put aside tax-free money for medical and dental expenses. Since most funds expire on December 31st, make sure you put them towards necessary treatments before they’re gone.
Have you made the most out of your dental insurance this year? It’s not too late to do so. By following the tips outlined above, you can maximize your dental insurance benefits and walk into the new year with a healthier smile and thicker wallet!
About the Author
Dr. Grant Ringler is passionate about helping his patients achieve their happiest, healthiest smiles. He completed his dental education at the University of Nebraska and is currently a proud member of the Christian Medical and Dental Association, Kansas Dental Association, and more. If you have any questions about your dental insurance benefits, Dr. Ringler and the rest of the team are more than happy to help. Visit our website or call (620) 860-0309 to speak to a member of our team.