Using Your Insurance Benefits
As the end of the year approaches, it's time to consider how you can use any unused dental insurance benefits to make sure that your oral health is as it should be. Once this year ends, the benefits for which you spent your hard earned money may be gone. You typically have until December 31st of each year to use your benefits or funds in an FSA, but you should check with your provider or employer to be sure.
Using Your Plan
There are some steps you can take to make sure that you are making the most of your dental plan before your benefits expire:
- Verify with your dental insurance provider and dentist what services and products are covered.
- Schedule a preventive visit if you have not yet had one.
- Use your coverage early in the year after determining your dental needs.
Common Insurance Plans
Preferred Provider Organization. Commonly referred to as a PPO, this dental plan provides a network of dentists who offer a number of dental services that depend on the type of plan you have. The services they provide have set fees. If you were to see a dentist who was not in the network, it is highly likely that your out-of-pocket expenses would be more than what you would pay if you saw a dentist who was in the network.
Dental Health Maintenance Organization. In a DHMO plan, the network dentists receive monthly compensation for covered dental services whether or not you see a dentist. There are some covered services for which you will not have to pay and others that may require an out-of-pocket payment.
Discount or Referral Dental Plans. These types of plans involve groups of dentists who have contracted with a company to provide dental services at a discount. All of the services the dentists provide, including cosmetic services, are discounted. These types of plans cannot be technically classified as benefit plan as they do not pay for the services you receive. As a member of the plan, you will be required to make a full payment at the discounted rate for the treatment you receive.
Flexible Spending Accounts
An FSA account, which operates similarly to a debit card, is an account that you set up through your employer and can be used to pay for any product or services you need for oral health, such as professional cleanings, benefit co-pays and more. When you enroll, you will decide how much money you want to have in the account, and deductions will be made from each of your paychecks before taxes.
Premier Dental Care can provide you with the dental services you need to make sure that you are on the path to optimal health for the beginning of the new year. Sign up for our email list so that you can receive the latest news about our office and helpful oral health tips.