No one likes to lose money but unfortunately, it happens every year without people even knowing it. How is this possible? The moment the clock strikes midnight on December 31 each year, the insurance companies eagerly take back billions of dollars in unused benefits. Since these valuable pieces of your dental plan do not roll over, you could be losing hundreds or thousands of dollars. If that sounds like a cruel trick you’ve been a part of for a while now, read on to learn how you can put a stop to it and instead, take advantage of your insurance before 2020 arrives.
Understand Your Plan
Knowing the ins and outs of your dental plan is important if you want to make the most of your benefits. Some key aspects you want to make sure you’re mindful of include:
- Your monthly premium – This is what you’re responsible for paying to the insurance company each month for access to your plan.
- Your deductible – The magic number you must meet each year before the insurance company begins to pay more of their share.
- Your annual maximum – Another important figure that your insurer agrees will be the most they intend to pay in a calendar year. If you go over that amount, you are responsible for the remainder.
- Coverage – This is how much your insurance agrees to cover for preventive, minor, and major services.
Get Your Second Cleaning and Checkup
Depending on your individual plan, most dental insurance policies cover 100% of preventive services. These often include:
- Regular checkups and cleanings (twice a year)
- Dental X-rays
- Fluoride Treatment
The fact that your insurance company is agreeing to pay for you to have your teeth checked and cleaned twice a year should have you scheduling an appointment right away. Maybe you’ve already received your first exam but still need to have the second one before the year is up. Not only will this short and sweet visit prevent future problems, but it will also allow you to keep your mouth clean without paying anything out of pocket.
Watch Out for Increasing Fees
So, your dentist just informed you that you need a root canal. With the holidays coming up, you make the decision to hold off until 2020. You might want to rethink that decision since insurance companies are known for increasing fees each year. Your monthly premium, deductible, annual maximum, and benefit coverage can all change in a matter of seconds. What was covered at 11:59 p.m. on December 31, is no longer available as of 12:00 a.m. on January 1. So, don’t take the risk.
The year is almost over but there’s still time to improve your oral health. Speak to a member of your dental team today about ways you can maximize your plan. Don’t waste your dental benefits! Get the care you need today and walk into the new year with a new and improved smile.
About the Author
Dr. Minh-Phuong Bui attended Regis College and graduated Magna Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry. She then went on to earn her Doctor of Dental Medicine degree from Tufts University School of Dental Medicine. Dr. Bui is passionate about helping others achieve healthy, beautiful smiles, and as a member of the Southeastern Dental Care team, she and her colleagues want to make sure you are getting the most out of your dental insurance benefits. Whether you need that second dental cleaning or a tooth extracted, let us help you maximize your plan in a way that saves you money and provides you with the care you need and deserve. To learn more, visit our website or call (508) 947-5717.