Dental Insurance Guide

Perhaps all of us at some point will need some work done on our teeth. These treatments and checks are a necessary part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. But sometimes the costs can be expensive.

That’s why many of us choose to take out dental insurance, to help us make these unavoidable expenses more affordable.

This posts will explain how dental insurance works and how it could benefit you and your family.

What is Dental Insurance?

In terms of private medical insurance, dental plans are often one of the cheapest health insurance products on the market.

In exchange for you monthly premiums, you can receive partial funds to help you pay for all things dental related, including checks and procedures. With many providers, you may have to claim back some or all of the funds, once you have initially paid for treatment.

Often dental plans can be added an as extra to an existing private medical insurance policy. However you can also buy it as a stand-alone insurance product.

Take a look at this Guide to Private Medical Insurance Types for more information.

Why Should I Consider Taking out Dental Insurance?

  • If you have a large family with children, your dental check-up bills can get very expensive. For those on tight household budgets, a dental plan can help you manage some of these costs.
  • If you have an existing Private Medical Insurance policy or Health Cash Plan, dental care can be added to your policy relatively easily. For more on Health Cash Plans, take a look at this guide.
  • If you have problems with your teeth and require regular appointments with a hygienist, a dental plan can help you manage the costs.
  • You may wish to consider a dental plan if you would like to receive treatment from a private centre, as well as NHS centres. These plans offer you the flexibility to be seen to where you wish.

What is Covered in a Dental Insurance Plan?

Policies can vary based on the provider and the individual level of cover you opt for. However, some of the things covered in a dental plan may include;

  • Examinations – routine check-ups
  • Hygienist treatments
  • Dental X-Rays
  • Money towards remedial or restorative treatments – fillings, crowns and bridges
  • Dentures

Let’s Look at a Dental Insurance Example:

Sylvia took out a dental insurance plan for £20 a month. In exchange for her premiums, she can receive full funds for private dental treatment.

Four months ago, Sylvia cracked a tooth on a burnt crouton and had to seek an out of hours’ appointment with her private dental practice. Thanks to her plan, Sylvia could be attended to at very short notice. If she had registered as an NHS patient in her hometown, she would’ve had to have waited a few days to be seen, which would’ve been very painful for her.

What are the Benefits of Dental Insurance?

  • Manage Costs – These plans may have relatively cheap premiums, in comparison with other private medical insurance policies. It can also be seen as a cost-effective form of insurance, as you are very likely to use it at least once a year.
  • Private Appointments – You can skip NHS waiting lists and go private with this form of insurance. This can be great for those experiencing dental problems. As the longer you wait for treatment, the longer you will be in pain and discomfort with your niggling dental problem.
  • World Cover – Some plans will allow you to receive treatment for dentistry in foreign countries, as well as in the UK.
  • Accident Cover – Some health insurance providers will also offer you financial cover if you were to become an in-patient for a dental-related accident. This could be something around £50 per overnight stay for up to one month, in some cases.
  • Lower Cost Private Treatment- In recent years the cost of private procedures has come down in price, meaning that private treatment may not be as unaffordable as you think. A plan, therefore may seem attractive to some.

What are the Pitfalls of Dental Insurance?

  • Waiting Periods – Some providers will not permit you to make a claim very early on in the policy. You may have to wait, for example, one-three months before your dental claims will be successful.
  • Cosmetic Restrictions – Some plans may have restrictions on claiming for cosmetic dental procedures, such as tooth whitening and orthodontics for cosmetic reasons.
  • More Expensive than NHS- Private dentists cost more than NHS appointments, as a general rule. The prices are divided into three separate income bands, to help make the services affordable for all. Further, if you have already paid for a procedure, and you have to return for the same complaints within a two-month window, you may not have to pay for the same treatment again. NHS, for many, is the most affordable way to seek dental care.

What are the Alternatives to Dental Insurance?

  • Private Medical Insurance – You could select a plan which includes dental procedures as part of a general private health care insurance policy. This will help you manage the costs for a broader range of medical treatments.
  • NHS – Although you may have to pay for NHS tests and treatments, these procedures will be subsidised in part, according to three different price bands. You may even be eligible for some free services if you are for example, under 18, or on income-based jobseeker’s allowance etc.
  • Financing Options – Individual private practices may be able to offer you finance plans to help you pay for procedures in instalments. Therefore, if your dental plan is just for you and you have healthy teeth and gums, you may not require a regular plan.

If you would like to find out more about Dental Insurance, get in touch with a dental insurance broker. They can offer you a free, no-obligation quote and advice to suit your circumstances.

Quick friendly service. I was quite confused about what my family and I required but the policy options were quickly clarified and I got a great price and top service. Emily Thompson, Bath

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