Q: How are discounted dental plans defined?
A: Dental insurance and a discounted dental insurance plan are two very different things. When it comes to discounted dental plans the consumer will be expected to pay annual membership payments to the discounted dental plan provider. When annual membership fees are adhered to and fulfilled the member gets to receive special rates on dental services by providers that are willing to work with the discounted dental plan provider to supply such discounts. Standard dental policies will typically omit coverage for special cosmetic work while discounted dental plans may include huge savings on cosmetic procedures. What is truly advantageous about many of today’s discounted dental plans is that most consumers can avail themselves of such plans without having to be interviewed or evaluated by the dental plan provider.

Q: Are additional dental insurance add-ons worth the investment?
A: For a consumer to determine if additional dental insurance add-ons or supplemental policies are legitimate investments, the consumer must first evaluate his or her individual dental needs. This means that if the consumer plans to have lots of dental work done, then such policies might very well be worth the additional costs. If the consumer plans on having just routine work completed and it is something covered by dental insurance or plans, supplemental policies might be deemed unnecessary. Usually, supplemental dental plans are fantastic for helping out with payments toward cosmetic procedures and work. The consumer will also need to find out if the dental provider is willing to accept two different forms of coverage for a single procedure as well.

Q: When considering cosmetic work, is it wise to invest in dental insurance?
A: Many dental insurance plans do not offer cosmetic work coverage, but some do. It really depends upon the dental insurance provider and what the policy outlines as acceptable. Typically, things that are considered cosmetic or intended for beautification are not covered; teeth whiting and bleaching are one such example. In contrast, some policies might pay for part of necessary cosmetic work and what is paid for is usually broken down into predefined percentages. If a consumer has a traditional dental insurance policy and wants additional coverage for cosmetic work, he or she may have to rely on supplemental policies for such coverage.

Q: What exactly are direct reimbursement dental plans?
A: Many consumers have come to appreciate direct reimbursement dental plans because they are flexible plans which cover a variety of dental work, at least in part. The true flexibility of such plans is identified in the fact that the individual can select his or her dental care provider and the work that is performed. The downside to direct reimbursement dental plans is identified in the fact that the consumer must pay for procedures up front and wait to be reimbursed by the plan provider as consumers are “directly reimbursed”.

Q: Are orthodontic procedures something that is characteristically covered by dental insurance and plans?
A: The dental insurance plan that one is considering or that one has will clearly define whether or not orthodontics is covered. Usually such policies do not provide coverage for orthodontics because this work is considered cosmetic. Braces, however, might be included in coverage. The price of additional coverage for orthodontics will need to be weighed against the total costs of orthodontic procedures before a consumer should elect to get additional, optional dental insurance coverage.