How to Make the Most of Your Dental Benefits Plan

Posted on October 1, 2019 in Dental Procedures, General Dentistry

The month of October has long been associated with everything pumpkin spice. As nice as pumpkin spice is, we’d like to change that association. How about instead, you think of October as “time to schedule my end-of-the-year dentist visit?”

Keep reading to discover why it’s oh-so-important not to forget about your dentist during the final months of the year.

How Do Most Dental Benefits Plans Work?

Most dental plans cover patients for an entire calendar year—so, from January 1st to December 31st. As a result, there’s a good possibility that you’ve paid for dental benefits  that will expire at the end of the year if not used. And unfortunately, in most cases, these benefits don’t roll over.

The same holds true if you’ve contributed to a Flexible Spending Account with your employer. Typically, any money you’ve contributed to these plans won’t roll over at the end of the year—which is why it’s a good idea to contact your plan’s administrator to find out how much money you have left to spend in these accounts.

What Types of Dental Visits Can I Schedule?

Each insurance plan is different, so there’s no one perfect answer for everyone. However, generally speaking, most insurance plans cover preventative services (such as exams, x-rays and cleanings) between 80-100% and restorative services (such as fillings and crowns) between 50-80%, once your deductible has been met. However, they usually cap the total amount they’ll pay in a given year to around $1,000. There is wide variance between what one plan will cover when compared to the next, so it is important to ask questions of your benefits administration and your insurance company. At Smile Hilliard, we are insurance experts, and we can also help you to understand your benefits plan better!

For those patients that have multiple treatment needs, you may be asking “Where do I begin?”  Dr. Sanyk always prioritizes any treatment recommendations to help minimize discomfort, decrease the risk of needing more treatment, and lower your overall costs.  

Another technique that can be useful in maximizing your benefits is scheduling dental treatments requiring multiple visits strategically at the end of one year and into the beginning of the next.  For instance, say you need a dental procedure that has to take place over 3 appointments. You might want to schedule the first 1 or 2 appointments this year—making sure you maximize your benefits—and then, arrange for the rest to take place in the following year.  Be cautious though! Dental insurance companies often have hidden rules about certain procedures, so please discuss this option with our Patient Care Coordinators to see if it will work for you.  

Not sure exactly what dental benefits you have remaining? Give us a call and we will look into it for you, or you may contact your insurance provider to find out.

Where Can I Learn More About This Topic?

To learn more about dental insurance, check out our blog post titled, Dental Financing Series: How Does Dental Insurance Work? In it, you’ll find answers to common questions about insurance, as well as more information about what your dental insurance covers.

Why Should I Schedule My Smile Hilliard Dental Appointment NOW?

The last quarter of the year is always a very busy time for us here at Smile Hilliard. With the busy holiday season and many patients trying to use their dental benefits before they expire, we expect to be booked solid toward the end of the year.

So, to make sure we can accommodate your appointment request, it’s best to schedule any needed dental visits right away. Fortunately, we make it super-easy for you to do so!

How Can I Schedule my Dental Appointment at Smile Hilliard?

At Smile Hilliard, it’s convenient as can be to schedule your end-of-the-year dental visit! To do so, just contact us online or call our office at 614.534.0257 to request an appointment. We are located at 6304 Scioto Darby Road in Hilliard.