6 reasons why dental insurance is important
Posted: November 20, 2021
Dental insurance is a must if you want to protect your teeth and gums. With a dental plan, you can ensure that you receive the regular cleanings and exams your mouth needs to stay in the best shape possible.
It’s important to have dental insurance to manage the costs of dental care and ensure everyone’s teeth are in excellent shape year after year. It’s also essential to find the right coverage for you. Knowing what options are out there and getting guidance from a professional team can help you find an insurer you can count on. At Health for California, we find providers that suit your needs.
1. Reduces Your Out-of-Pocket Expenses
Generally, dentists recommend getting a dental checkup every six months. Dental insurance usually fully covers the costs of a dental exam, cleaning and x-rays, which can be particularly helpful if you are paying for your dental care and that of your family members. Dental coverage provides the cushion you need to handle these ongoing expenses.
While twice-yearly appointments are the gold standard for dental health, needs vary from person to person. People in higher-risk groups, such as those who are pregnant or diabetic, may require more than two visits to keep up with oral health. Some people are more prone to plaque buildup, and dentists may ask them to make appointments more than twice a year. Your dental insurance can help cover all of these costs.
You may need to get a crown, fill a cavity or have a tooth fixed during the year. One in four adults ages 20 to 64 has at least one cavity. Your dental plan can significantly reduce the amount you pay out of pocket for non-preventative dental care or even cover the cost of care altogether.
During your regular dental appointments, your oral hygienists and dentists can give you tooth brushing advice to protect your teeth, helping to keep your need for dental care to a minimum.
2. Protects Your Overall Health
The importance of dental insurance reaches far beyond the related expenses. Your oral health reflects your overall health.
Your mouth contains lots of beneficial bacteria that help protect your teeth from cavities and your gums from periodontal disease. Potentially harmful bacteria can also live in the mouth. The “good” bacteria help to keep the bad bacteria in check. Getting your teeth professionally cleaned also helps to protect your teeth and gums.
Seeing your dentist as recommended can also keep harmful bacteria from spreading to other parts of the body, reducing your risk of other types of disease.
If the bacteria travel through the body, they can affect vital organs like your heart and lungs. Poor oral health has been connected to:
- Pneumonia: When bacteria travels to your lungs through your mouth, it can cause various respiratory diseases, like pneumonia. When pneumonia is severe, it may require hospitalization.
- Cardiovascular disease: The connection between oral bacteria and cardiovascular disease is still unclear. However, research points to oral bacteria causing inflammation and infections that lead to stroke, clogged arteries and heart disease.
- Birth complications: Research has shown a link between gum disease, premature births and low birth weight.
- Endocarditis: This infection of your heart chambers’ inner linings can start with germs and bacteria in other parts of the body. The bacteria in your mouth can travel through your bloodstream straight to your heart.
While these are among the most common illnesses linked to gum disease and mouth bacteria, other studies have revealed more. Gum disease is believed to lead to an increased risk for Alzheimer’s and dementia. Researchers suggest that the bacteria that cause gum disease can travel through the bloodstream to the brain.
Good health starts in your mouth. If you want to keep your entire body healthy, you need to care for your teeth.
3. Lets You Spot Problems Early
The saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” exists for a reason. The earlier you or your dentist notice a potential issue, the sooner they can treat the problem. It’s usually easier to treat issues in the early stages. For example, it’s possible to reverse an early-stage cavity with a fluoride treatment rather than filling it.
Some of the concerns you can catch early if you have dental coverage and see your dentist regularly include:
- Tooth decay: Decay or cavities are among the most common ailments in dentistry. Daily flossing and brushing reduce plaque buildup, preventing acid from eating away at the surface of your teeth. A dental hygienist can perform a thorough cleaning of the teeth, removing plaque and tartar and reducing your risk of tooth decay.
- Periodontitis: Gum disease, also called periodontitis, is reversible in the earliest stages. A deep cleaning performed by a dentist can turn around gingivitis, improving the health of your gums. While periodontitis is treatable in the later stages, it might require surgery.
- Root infections: A dentist who spots a root infection in the earliest stages can save your tooth. Early detection can mean that you get necessary treatment like a root canal in a timely fashion, letting you keep the tooth.
- Oral cancer: Many dentists look for signs of oral cancer when they examine patients. Often, oral cancer starts with small, usually painless pink lumps inside the mouth. Early detection can mean the treatment is simpler and can save your life.
You can feel confident when you book your dental exams with dental coverage. You’ll know that the plan will help you pay for the exam and that it will help you nip problems in the bud. You can keep up with your biannual schedule when you have reliable dental insurance, and your dentist can catch problems before they start.
4. Covers Emergency Expenses
Life likes to surprise you. Sometimes, that surprise can take the form of an accident. You might chip a tooth while eating or lose a tooth while playing a sport. You may even encounter sudden oral symptoms like jaw pain or repetitive canker sores that concern you.
When you can’t afford dental care, it’s easy to let these problems go unaddressed because treatment is outside of your budget. Dental insurance provides the cushion you need when unexpected tooth problems show up. Whether you need a false tooth or a cap, assistance from a dental insurer can help you manage.
Another possible emergency can start with the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). TMJ disorders can result from arthritis, genetic factors and various behaviors. People who grind their teeth during sleep or clench their jaw while stressed may experience jaw clicking and pain from TMJ.
While TMJ is typically temporary, it can get severe in certain circumstances. A person with TMJ may experience a locked joint in their jaw, making it difficult to open or close the mouth. This locked joint can make eating a challenge and require an emergency dental visit.
Losing a tooth during a sport may be reserved for athletes and avid fitness fans, but tooth emergencies can happen to anyone. Dental insurance lets you respond to them without leaving a notable dent in your savings.
5. Covers Your Family
Taking care of your health through dentist visits is essential. It’s also important to give your children the dental care and coverage they need. The good news is that many types of dental insurance plans can help you cover your spouse and your kids.
Purchasing individual insurance for every member of your family can be a significant expense. Group plans allow you to cover several people for a lower cost. Often, the bigger your group is, the more you save, which is helpful when you’re covering a big family.
While group insurance includes one price for the unit, you can still have the freedom to customize coverages for each person. For example, if one of your children needs braces, you can include orthodontic coverage in their plan to help you handle the added expenses for the related procedures.
Another benefit of a family plan is how much time it can save. Comparing individual coverages across the board can be time-consuming. You need to compare prices and the breadth of coverage as you consider the needs of each family member. Group coverage allows you to choose a plan far more quickly.
Giving your child access to regular dental care is valuable to their lifelong perception of oral health. Starting good habits early can help them prevent major issues later.
6. Makes You Confident in Your Smile
Getting your teeth regularly and professionally cleaned can improve their appearance. The cleaning removes surface stains and tartar, making your teeth look whiter and healthier. Dental insurance usually covers preventive and routine services like examinations and cleanings.
While teeth cleanings focus on removing plaque and tartar buildup, they can also help whiten temporarily. Dentists can also give you brushing tips and recommendations for toothpaste and toothbrush brands to give you the best whitening results while promoting general tooth health.
If necessary, dental care can also help to correct chipped teeth or crooked teeth. If you have an under or overbite and your insurance includes coverage for orthodontic care, you can get a smile you feel confident about. While dental insurance will cover these emergencies to improve your quality of life, the services will also keep your smile bright and complete.
Think of cosmetic improvements as the icing on the cake when it comes to dental care. Insurance coverage gives you the ability to see your dentist regularly, protecting your teeth and preserving their appearance. Improved aesthetics are an added bonus to the regular appointments you can schedule with dental insurance. Feel confident in your smile and continue to share it with people around you.
Dental Plans From Health for California
At Health for California, we connect individuals and families with health care coverage that suits their needs. Our goal is to connect you with a dental insurance provider who can provide coverage that works with your budget.
On top of connecting you with a provider, we want to educate you about the world of dental insurance. It can be complex, and we want you to understand the terms and requirements wrapped up in dental insurers.
A major consideration with dental coverage is the required wait time. Many providers will only cover when you wait six months or more between appointments. There are also varying premiums, deductibles, copayments and yearly maximums. Finding the right plan is a matter of knowing what you’re willing to pay each month and how much you can handle if you incur a significant dental expense.
Deductibles are the amount you have to pay before your coverage kicks in. A high deductible may be suitable for you if you can save elsewhere. Copayments are the amounts your pay alongside your insurer once your coverage kicks in.
With so many providers out there, it’s possible to find an insurer who offers terms that work for you. In addition to the details of your coverage, you want to think about what type of plan suits you best. There are two main types of dental plans:
- Dental maintenance organization (DMO): This type of plan involves a primary dental physician who coordinates your care and refers you to other specialists within the network if the need arises.
- Preferred provider organization (PPO): This plan allows you to go to any provider, and the dental coverage follows you. Working with a dentist in the insurance network can lower your rates.
The team at Health for California will help you identify the best possible plan for your situation. Whether you need an embedded or supplemental plan, we’ll connect you with the right provider. We also help you find a family plan that offers appropriate coverage for you and your loved ones in California.
Get a Quote for Dental Coverage
Health for California helps you find a California dental insurer with coverages that suit your needs. Our application process is completely free, allowing you to focus on the search rather than spending limitations. We have your best interest in mind, and we can give you access to insurers quickly and easily so you can start enjoying the benefits of dental insurance as soon as possible.
In addition to helping you find the right provider, we also offer a range of educational materials about enrollment, discounts and the providers we work with. Make sure to explore our site to find everything you need to know. Fill out an application today to get a free quote, or call us at 1-877-752-4737 to talk to one of our representatives.
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